Der Kaiser tips Bafana for semis

GERMAN soccer boss Franz Beckenbauer is so confident about the 2010 Fifa World Cup that he is tipping three African teams, including Bafana Bafana, to reach the semifinals.

GERMAN soccer boss Franz Beckenbauer is so confident about the 2010 Fifa World Cup that he is tipping three African teams, including Bafana Bafana, to reach the semifinals.

The other countries are Ivory Coast and Ghana.

"The anticipation is huge. It will be an African World Cup and I'm really looking forward to it, because it's going to be very colourful and entertaining," Beckenbauer told the Fifa website. "Der Kaiser" is one of the world football legends who yesterday reiterated their backing for the Cup in South Africa.

Others are Cameroonian Roger Milla, England's Sir Bobby Charlton, Pele of Brazil and Mexico's Hugo Sanchez, who are all members of Fifa's football committee.

Milla said: "We are so happy to have received this World Cup. We could not believe that we would get it. Every time I come to Zurich, I thank (Fifa) president Blatter for that."

Charlton said: "It was the right decision to finally have an African country hosting this tournament. I'm sure it will be a major success. I've been to South Africa lots of times and people will enjoy it down there.

"I'm extremely happy that I will go to this year's Cup.

Sanchez said: "To have South Africa hosting the Cup is not only good for football, but for the whole continent."

Pele said: "Everybody knows that I'm very confident and happy because I was the one who was fighting for the World Cup to be in Africa.

"They deserve it."

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