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Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Des Van Rooyen. Picture Credit: Gallo Images
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Giggs falls in love

By unknown | Jul 30, 2008 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

All reports by Ramatsiyi Moholoa

All reports by Ramatsiyi Moholoa

Ryan Giggs, Manchester United's captain, has also thrown his weight behind South Africa for the 2010 Fifa World Cup, saying it will be one of the greatest soccer events ever.

Giggs, who has represented the Red Devils a record 802 times, said he was highly impressed by the preparations undertaken by the Local Organising Committee for the tournament.

"South Africa will be hosting the World Cup in 2010, which is good for the country. It will be a great World Cup," said Giggs, 34, prior to their departure to England via Nigeria after clinching the Vodacom Challenge.

The down-to-earth Welshman is quite familiar with South Africa after he first visited the country with the reigning European and English champions in 1993.

Giggs, who confessed to being in love with South Africa, was also here for their first Vodacom Challenge two years ago when United were defeated by Kaizer Chiefs on penalties in a final at Loftus Stadium

"So far the preparations for the World Cup have been terrific, the stadiums that we have used here are very good. I was also quite happy with the condition of the pitches that we have been playing and training on," said Giggs.

Giggs' sentiments were echoed by his coach, Alex Ferguson, who has relatives in Cape Town who he frequently visits.

"You have a fantastic country, I love South Africa. The stadiums here are great and there is no doubt that you will host a great World Cup," Ferguson said.

"But we all know that every World Cup has challenges.

"There are issues like racism in football, hooliganism and crime which I have no doubt that the South African authorities will deal with. It's not only in South Africa, Germany had their own challenges but South Africa must not copy from the Germans.

"One of the things that makes the World Cup such a great event is the supporters who will be coming here from all over the world. It happened with the recent Euro Cup. You can imagine the number of people who will be coming here if England, Ireland and Scotland qualify for the World Cup."

On the standard of soccer in South Africa, Ferguson said there was tremendous improvement in the past two years.

"It is far better now, the players are more organised. The speed of the players has also improved. Credit to Orlando Pirates and Kaizer Chiefs, they were highly competitive this time round."

Regarding Bafana Bafana, Ferguson said it was important for the hosts to do well in order to make the World Cup more exciting.


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