england for sa?

YOU BEAUTY YOU: The imposing soccer City was officially handed over to the City of Johannesburg yesterday. Pic.Antonio Muchave. 01/03/2010. © Sowetan.
YOU BEAUTY YOU: The imposing soccer City was officially handed over to the City of Johannesburg yesterday. Pic.Antonio Muchave. 01/03/2010. © Sowetan.

THE Wayne Rooney-led England are likely to play against Bafana Bafana before to the 2010 Fifa World Cup to mark the official opening of Johannesburg's imposing Soccer City.

THE Wayne Rooney-led England are likely to play against Bafana Bafana before to the 2010 Fifa World Cup to mark the official opening of Johannesburg's imposing Soccer City.

"Negotiations are under- way with England to play this match and Safa are handling the matter," said 2010 World Cup City of Johannesburg executive director Sibongile Mazibuko.

Mazibuko was speaking at a function at the upgraded stadium which was officially handed over to Johannesburg executive mayor Amos Masondo by Aveng Group head Roger Jardine yesterday.

"There is also a possibility that we can use the Denmark match against Bafana Bafana (on June 5), but an announcement to this effect will be made at the appropriate time.

"We are going to have several test matches as per the requirements of Fifa before the start of the World Cup on June 11 when Bafana Bafana play against Mexico.

"On March 26, there will be a game featuring some of our officials and soccer legends. There will also be a tour of schools in Johannesburg and the entire Gauteng.

"Pupils will also test the facilities, things like toilets and parking. There will also be Nedbank Cup matches at the venue," she said.

Earlier, the Premier Soccer League announced that the semifinals and final of the 2010 Telkom Knockout Cup will also serve as test matches at World Cup venues.

Soccer City, which is the mecca of South African football, will host two crucial games of the World Cup in the form of the opening and closing ceremonies.

Top Safa officials were conspicuous by their absence at yesterday's handover ceremony. They were all apparently in Durban for last night's match between Bafana and Namibia.

The only notable person at the ceremony was 2010 Local Organising Committee Soccer City manager Songezo Nayo.

l To view the Soccer City handover ceremony, go to www.sowetan.co.za

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