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Micho: Bafana can be surprise package

Orlando Pirates coach Milutin Sredojevic says Bafana Bafana’s seeding in Pot 3 should not bring pessimism as he voices his backing for the Stuart Baxter-led technical team and players.

All eyes are set to turn to the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations draw, which is set to take place in Cairo on Friday evening at 20h00 (SA time).

Bafana find themselves seeded into Pot 3, with hosts Egypt, reigning champions Cameroon and other big guns like Senegal, Nigeria, Ghana, Ivory Coast and Algeria all split across Pot 1 and 2.

READ: CAF confirm AFCON draw pots

However, Micho believes it is not a major problem that South Africa are likely to be drawn in a tough group, given that a third-placed finish could still progress to the knockout stages, while he also hopes Bafana could be the surprise package of the tournament.

“With the format of 24 teams, it is not a disaster being in Pot 3, having in mind that – yes, you can get two very hard teams, but practically four third-placed teams will qualify [for the Last 16],” said the experienced former national team mentor.

“Importance is that once you learn your opposition, you go into the deepest possible details and prepare well, but I have no doubt that our national team – and I count myself as a part of football here, so allow me please to feel South African – [will progress].

“As a technical person, a supporter and coach of giant club like Orlando Pirates, we stand behind the national team coach, and we are also working very hard in order not only to have [Innocent] Maela and [Thembinkosi] Lorch, but several other players knocking on the door for the 23-man squad to represent South Africa.

“As a technical person, a supporter and coach of giant club like Orlando Pirates, we stand behind the national team coach, and we are also working very hard in order not only to have [Innocent] Maela and [Thembinkosi] Lorch, but several other players knocking on the door for the 23-man squad to represent South Africa.

“I think once you learn your opposition then all the planning will come, but I have no doubt that South Africa will be ready and I, personally, believe in the players we have and the technical team, and all of us need to stand behind the team.

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