Johannesburg - South Africa included two 'wild cards' --
goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune and centre-back Erick Mathoho -- in a squad named
Thursday for the 2016 Rio Olympic Games football tournament.
Both play for Soweto club Kaizer Chiefs and are regulars for
Bafana Bafana (The Boys), the national senior team.
While worldwide qualifying for the competition is restricted
to under-23 footballers, three over-age footballers or 'wild cards' can be
included in the 18-player tournament squad.
Coach Owen de Gama chose two foreign-based strikers,
Lebogang Mothiba from French club Lille and Tyroane Sandows from Brazilian
South Africa qualified by coming third in the Africa U-23
Cup of Nations and are in Group A with hosts Brazil, Denmark and Iraq.
The top two finishers progress to the quarter-finals.
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South Africa stunned Brazil 3-1 in their only previous
Olympics football appearance, 16 years ago in Sydney, but defeats by Japan and
Slovakia cost them a place in the knockout stages.
Goalkeepers: Jody February (Ajax Cape Town), Itumeleng Khune
Defenders: Tercious Malape, Abbubaker Mobara (both Orlando
Pirates), Rivaldo Coetzee (Ajax), Erick Mathoho (Chiefs), Kwandakwensizwa
Mngonyama (Maritzburg Utd), Tebogo Moerane (Wits), Mothobi Mvala (Highlands
Midfielders: Keagan Dolly (Mamelodi Sundowns), Deolin Mekoa
(Maritzburg), Maphosa Modiba (Mpumalanga Black Aces), Gift Motupa (Pirates),
Phumlani Ntshangase (Wits)
Strikers: Menzi Masuku (Chippa Utd), Tashreeq Morris (Ajax),
Lebogang Mothiba (Lille/FRA), Tyroane Sandows (Gremio/BRA)
Coach: Owen da GamaFor
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