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15.06.2005 Football News

400 school children supported by free gate

Raymond Yeboah([email protected])

The South African Football Association (Safa) says they are going to get tough on players who don't pitch up for training ahead of important games.

Elrio van Heerden has been give 24 hours to report for duty. Van Heerden plays for FC Copenhagen in the Danish league. His team has three important games over the next week, and the club wants him available for them. Coach Stuart Baxter says Van Heerden must be on the pitch by tomorrow.

Baxter says if the player does not show up, tough action will be taken. Van Heerden's league runs over a calendar year, with the break happening in the cold winter months, which is why he is not enjoying the holiday that many other European based players are having.

Suitable game plan Baxter says this is a World Cup qualifier on Fifa calendar date. But the good news today was that Quinton Fortune and Mbulelo Mabizela reported for duty, although Benedict Vilakazi is still nursing his flu. Without the injured Han! s Vonk, Bradley Carnell and Cyril Nzama, Baxter won't be playing will his full strength team. But says he has a game plan that is suitable for Saturday.

Manchester United's Fortune says it is important for the team to get three points in this game. Fortune may have it tough because the back-on-form Mbulelo Mabizela played his position during the Cape Verde match. Bafana Bafana started their training on Monday. South Africa top Group 2 with 15 points - just three ahead of Ghana and the DRC.

Meanwhile, in a move to support the team, Safa and Gauteng provincial government have organised 400 buses to ferry school children to the FNB Stadium for Saturday's game. Safa has also announced that no tickets will be sold at the stadium on the day.