Serero gets Baxter lifeline
Coach welcomes star midfielder back to Bafana side for Nigeria’s Eagles
Bafana Bafana coach Stuart Baxter has given Thulani Serero a second chance by including him in the squad to face Nigeria for the Africa Cup of Nations qualifier on November 17 because the midfielder has made an unconditional commitment to the senior national team.
Serero made headlines last year when he ruled himself out of Bafana Bafana call-ups before a crucial World Cup qualifier against Senegal unless he was guaranteed game time but Baxter is not expecting problems this time around after talks with the 28-year-old.
“Thulani indicated strongly to people at the association (Safa) that he wanted to make himself available for selection. I obviously checked on his form and he has been playing quite well at a good level‚” said Baxter when he announced the squad to take on the Super Eagles.
“I obviously spoke to him and we are both on the same page. I needed to know from him if his availability is unconditional because if you remember the problem was that he did want to play for the national team but he did not want to sit on the bench. I needed to be convinced of his unconditional availability and he assured me that it was.
“I was delighted to hear that because he is one of the players who are playing at a very good level. He is and he has been an important player for us. I don’t think he is the sort of player who makes a massive impact with his noise in the dressing-room because he is a quiet boy. But he has qualities that we will need in our attacking game because of his mobility‚ the vision to see a pass and one-on-one situation.”
Baxter said bringing the SBV Vitesse midfielder back to the national team and giving him another chance to represent his country was because the player acknowledged he made a poor decision but promised to fit into the team’s environment...