Banyana Banyana Jet Off to USA

Banyana Banyana players pictured jetting off to the United States of America ahead of two international friendlies. Photo: Banyana Banyana (Instagram)

Banyana Banyana departed for the United States of America on Sunday night (17 September 2023) ahead of their two international friendly matches against the former FIFA Women’s World Cup champions this month.  

Coach Desiree Ellis’ charges assembled for camp in Johannesburg on Saturday evening (16 September 2023) in preparation for the trip and they will face the US women’s national soccer team in matches to be played on 21 September in Cincinnati, and on 24 September in Chicago.

The two sides are coming from participating at the recent 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, and the matches will be the first since both sides were knocked out in the Round of 16 of the global tournament. 

Ellis will use these games to also run the rule over her squad ahead of a busy schedule that includes qualifiers for the Women’s Africa Cup of Nations and the Olympic Games.

The South African senior women’s team spent Sunday morning with new sponsors Shield in a breakfast engagement that was attended by SAFA CEO Lydia Monyepao and a contingent from SAFA House, and Shield representatives Tamryn Taylor (Southern Africa Deodorant Marketing Director), Sithembile Ngobese (Head of Corporate Affairs Southern Africa), Gareth Marshall (Sponsorship & Partnerships Lead) and Boitumelo Motsilanyane (Shield Brand Lead). 

Monyepao extended her gratitude to Shield for raising their hands and coming on board as sponsors. 

“I would like to welcome and acknowledge our new sponsor, (brand new from the box) Shield, we want to welcome you to Banyana Banyana. These ladies have been tough on us to say we need to get more sponsors for the team, and we have been searching everywhere (looking under the table) and knocking on closed doors. But thank you Shield for raising your hand and coming on board,” she said.

The aim of this breakfast is to catch up as far as the sponsorship is concerned. It is because of sponsorships that the team is able to have such quality international friendlies. Without funding and sponsors, it becomes difficult for preparations to happen.

SAFA CEO Lydia Monyepao

“To the Banyana Banyana players and staff, welcome back to camp. I know that it has not been long since you returned from the FIFA Women’s World Cup and I want to wish you all the best for your trip to the US. I hope you can continue from where you left off against the Netherlands. You made us all proud and everyone is excited about what this team is doing on the international stage.”

Banyana Banyana will have a squad of 21 players in the USA, with a few changes to the team that was originally announced by Ellis a few days ago. Hildah Magaia has been withdrawn for medical reasons, while Sibulele Holweni suffered an injury and will not make the trip. Noko Matlou will also not make the trip due to Visa challenges and she has been being replaced by Faith Nokuthula. 

Game 1 (Live on SABC)

22 September: USA vs South Africa (TQL Stadium, Cincinnati)
01:00am (build up) and 01:30 am (kickoff) CAT 
(SABC Sport Channel, SABC 1,, SABC Plus & SABC Radio Stations)

Game 2 (Live on SABC)

24 September: USA vs South Africa (Soldier Field, Chicago)
23:00pm (build-up) and 23:30 (Kickoff) CAT
(SABC Sport Channel, SABC 1,, SABC Plus & SABC Radio Stations)

Photo 1 Caption: Banyana Banyana players pictured jetting off to the United States of America ahead of two international friendlies. Photo: Banyana Banyana (Instagram)

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