Blatter invites SAFA President to Zurich

Monday, October 5, 2009

Johannesburg - FIFA President Sepp Blatter has extended his congratulations and an invitation to the newly elected President of the South African Football Association (SAFA) Kirsten Nematandani to meet with him in Zurich.

"I have the pleasure to invite you to come to Zurich, the home of FIFA, to discuss matters of mutual interest," Blatter said in a letter to Nematandani, extending his congratulations as well as best wishes in the next four years.

With just eight months to go before the 2010 World Cup, a first on African soil, Blatter said: "The South African football community now needs unity around SAFA, resolve and hard work to meet the expectations of the world for the organisation of our most important competition and full support behind Bafana Bafana."

Nematandani accepted the invitation saying: "We are humbled by President Blatter's invitation to meet and discuss matters of mutual interest, in particular the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa.

"We have committed ourselves to stage a successful world cup next year, and we intend to keep our eyes on the ball in order to achieve our objective."

Speaking to BuaNews recently, Nematandani said he would soon meet with Bafana Bafana's head coach Joel Santana and his technical team to find out the challenges hindering their achievements.

Santana has recently come under fire following the national team's string of poor performances especially after the FIFA Confederations Cup in June.

The SAFA President appealed to South Africans to continue supporting the national team, promising that he would do everything possible to turn the tide of South African football, including introducing sports scientists and psychologists to work with the players.

Nematandani said he was also planning to meet with President Jacob Zuma to assure him that the new SAFA leadership will not disappoint him and the country, as he was committed to taking the country's football to another level.