Why Bafana’s Baxter Is Flying To England...
Bafana Bafana head coach, Stuart Baxter, is expected to fly out to the United Kingdom this weekend to go and check in with some of the South Africans playing in England.
Take a look at some SA starlets overseas in the gallery above
Baxter is looking at widening the pool of players that could potentially represent Bafana going forward, with the Englishman looking to build on the recent Four Nations tournament win in Zambia as he takes the team forward.
Last year he went to France to see the likes of Bongani Zungu and Keagan Dolly, meeting their respective coaches and has explained that there have been talks to get Swiss youth international, Joel Untersee, on board for the future.
Now, according to Siya sources, Baxter is heading out to England to meet with some of the players there that are eligible to play for Bafana, with Leicester City, Crystal Palace, Southampton and Newcastle United just some of the English Premier League teams with footballers of interest on their books.
While it is unknown exactly which players Baxter is going to try and meet, it is thought that one of the main targets is Preston North End’s in-form attacker, Tom Barkhuizen, who is eligible due to his South African heritage.
Meanwhile, there is also Siph Mdlalose at Southampton, Newcastle United’s Tyrique Bartlett, Khanya Leshabela at Leicester City and Nikola Tavares of Crystal Palace all plying their trade within the youth ranks of EPL outfits.
Meanwhile, it’s also believed that Baxter will be handing the upcoming COSAFA Cup over to the U23s rather than using it as a tournament for the South African senior national team, giving the U23s the chance to start preparations for next year’s U23 African Cup of Nations as they seek a spot at the 2020 Olympic Games.