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Mbalula targets CHAN victory

Sports Minister hopes Bafana can head into the friendly with Brazil as CHAN champions.

Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula. Picture: Marc Lewis/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula says when Bafana take on Brazil in an international friendly, it will be as CHAN champions.

It was confirmed yesterday that the two sides will clash at FNB Stadium on 5 March.

Bafana will participate in the CHAN tournament in January.

Mbalula expects the game against the World Cup hosts to be a celebration for the country following the team's success in the tournament.

"We know that we are playing against champions, but it will be a great game. It will be a bonus if we win the CHAN before we meet with them, then we'll just walk all over them!"

The game falls in the same month the country celebrates 20 years of democracy and Mbalula says the team should give fans a performance worthy of the occasion.

"The main purpose of this game is the celebration of 20 years of democracy. We will celebrate the unity of our people through sport and the achievements that this great country has achieved. The fact that we play Brazil to mark the occasion is significant."

South African Football Associaition president, Danny Jordaan, says the tie will continue the strong relationship between the sides, especially as South Africa hands over the World cup hosting duties to the South Americans.

"Brazil is very serious about hosting a successful World Cup, and very serious about winning it. For them to decide that they want to play against Bafana and to strengthen their ties with South African football is very significant."

Following a fixture against World and European champions Spain, and now a fixture against Brazil, Jordaan has indicated that Bafana may next take on another South American giant.

"We told you we would bring Iniesta here, and he was here. Neymar is coming now, and we said in future that Messi would be coming. Just wait for that announcement."