The Burger King-sponsored South African U20 Men’s National Team now has a full compliment of the 21 selected players after the arrival in camp of midfielder Teboho Mokoena.
The Supersport United player landed in Suwon on Monday (22 May) shortly after the arrival of Bidvest Wits defender Reeve Frosler on Saturday (20 May).
Both reported late in camp due to club commitments.
“We had a long trip to Korea Republic but it was worth it, knowing that we will be representing our country at the biggest football tournament in the world. I hope my experience of playing in the FIFA U17 World Cup will come in handy, if I am given a run,” said Frosler, who helped his club to their first league title in 96 years.
He was on the bench for South Africa’s opening match of the 2017 FIFA U20 World Cup against Japan, which Amajita lost 2-1.
“I am really disappointed that we lost but the guys played very well, it just didn’t work for us on the day. Personally, I am very happy to be here after I missed out on the CAF U20 AFCON earlier this year. I am proud of the work they put in. Against Japan we played some good football but unfortunately we conceded two goals which took the game away from us,” added Frosler.
“We are left with two tough matches, so we have to pull together as a team and ensure we get maximum points in both. We must just remember that the game against Japan is behind us, there is nothing we can do about it. We must now focus on what is ahead.”
Mokoena, who has also been very impressive at club level (he played a huge role in assisting his team qualify for the Nedbank Cup final next month), is very excited about being in Korea.
“I have being itching to get here and I am glad I have finally arrived. Seeing my teammates at the hotel upon arrival just gave me energy, to such an extent that I could not sleep as I was raring to go to training,” said Mokoena.
“Watching the boys play against Japan was very nerve-wrecking because I had a strong belief that we would get three points but it was not to be. We are still in it though and have a chance of getting six points to reach the knockout phase, but we know it will not be easy – against Italy we have to dig deeper than we did when we faced Japan”.
The Burger King-sponsored South African U20 Men’s National Team takes on Italy in their second match of Group D.
The clash will be played on Wednesday, 24 May at Suwon World Cup Stadium in Suwon.
Kickoff is at 17h00 local time (10h00 SA time).