BUFFALO CITY TO HOST SWEDISH SOCCER CLUB
Swedish premier league soccer club, Gefle IF (GIF), arrive in East London on Monday 29 January 2007 to begin their first pre-season winter (European) training camp in South Africa at the invitation of the Buffalo City Municipality, Eastern Cape. The highlight of their visit will be the 'Buffalo City Challenge', a mouth watering encounter with the most exciting club in the Premier Soccer League (PSL), Bloemfontein Celtic FC, at ABSA Stadium , East London on Wednesday 7 February 2007 (19h00).
The other highlights of the Gefle IF tour include a warm up match against a Buffalo City (East London, King Williams Town and Bhisho) Invitation Soccer Team made up primarily of Vodacom League players at the ABSA Stadium, East London (19h00) on Wednesday 31 January 2007; and, a soccer development clinic for 100 Buffalo City 12 – 14 age group at Sisa Dukashe Stadium in Mdantsane on 1 February 2007.
"With the unfortunate demise of Mthatha Bucks in 2006 this is a wonderful opportunity for the Buffalo City Municipality to begin 2007 by demonstrating to soccer lovers in the Eastern Cape and the South Africa soccer fraternity in general that we full intend to remain on the map of both domestic and international soccer to 2010 and beyond", says the Buffalo City Municipality 2010 Project Manager, Vuyo Zambodla.
"As the Buffalo City Municipality begins to lobby various international soccer powers, including Sweden, to consider Buffalo City for 2010 soccer world cup training, preparation and hospitality it is imperative that we are continuosly testing and improving on our preparedness in this regard".
Bloemfontein Celtics FC are currently the most talked about team in the PSL with arguably the fastest growing support base in the country. The match against the Swedes will give them an opportunity to showcase their current great form in the Eastern Cape as they prepare to push for honors in the Castle Premiership.
Gefle IF finished 9th out of 14 teams in the Swedish 'Allsvenskan' (Premier League) in the 2006 season. Although they Gefle IF is one of Sweden's oldest clubs, formed in the east coast town of Gävle on 5th December 1882.
Captained by Johannes Ericsson (Number 8) Gefle IF have a very young team with an average age of 24, including a Swedish under -17 international, Marcus Hansson and a Swedish Under 19 international, Jonathan Hellström
The team also has three players from the Democratic Republic of Congo including theior star player, midfielder Rene Makondele. .
The tour takes place at the invitation of the Buffalo City Municipality Executive Mayor, Ms Zintle Peter, as part of the ongoing City-to-City partnership between Gävle Municipality (Sweden) and Buffalo City Municipality (East London, Bhisho and King Williams Town) in the Eastern Cape.
Project manager: 2010 FIFA World Cup
Buffalo city municipality
Tel: (043) 705 3896
Cell: 082 826 4129