AFTER a long flight from South Africa to the city of Shanghai in China, the team that had a fantastic 2011/2012 league season arrived with a bang and received a warm welcome from the local media and few fans that follows South Africa football league. When the team arrived at Hong-Kong Airport, one of the biggest airports in the world, the tournament organisers and surprisingly, few supporters were at the airport to welcome the team.
The weather is much warmer in Shanghai, 30 degrees to be precise, despite that it rains from time to time but the locals are enjoying every moment of their summer season. Moroka Swallows will be taking part in the 2012 Shanghai International Tournament which is scheduled to kick-off today (June 1).
“The Beautiful Birds” will take on Shanghai Shenxin F.C today and Shanghai Shenhua on Sunday. There are 2 competitions for each team and the winners will get 3 points, and the draw teams will get 1 point, as well as each goal will plus 1 point. The tournament will take place at Hongkou Football Stadium. The last match between Shanghai Shenhua and Moroka Swallows is expected to be the biggest crowd puller. Shanghai Shenhua is largely expected to sign the Ivorian striker Didier Drogba after he announced his departure from Chelsea.
There has been a minor change in the tournament fixture line up. Initially we reported that a France based team will take part in this tournament however this has changed. The Argentinean national youth soccer team will now take part in tournament.
Moroka Swallows will have their first training session this afternoon at 2pm local time. We spoke to the team Captain Lefa Tsutsulupa about his experience so far and he said: “It is exciting to be here in China as a team after a long and rewarding season. We are looking forward to play against some of the best players in the Chinese domestic league. There is a great possibility that we will win this tournament because of the way we play as a team. All I can say at this stage is that we are happy to be here to show-case South African talent. The entire team is here except Siyabonga Nomvethe and Oscar Machapa who were both called for national duty”