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Venues for Vodacom Challenge confirmed

The 2011 Vodacom Challenge will see English Premiership giants

Tottenham Hotspur take on Orlando Pirates FC and

Kaizer Chiefs from July 16-23 in a return for one of the most prestigious

international club competitions on the global footballing calendar.

The Vodacom Challenge took a break in 2010 due to the FIFA World CupT, but

is now back to deliver world-class football on behalf of a world-class

network!

Tottenham Hotspur will be hoping to reclaim the title they won in 2007,

their last appearance in the competition, while title holders Kaizer Chiefs

will aim for a repeat of their 2009 triumph, when they beat the English side

Manchester City 1-0 in the final.

Such has been the quality of the opposition since its inaugural year in 1999

that the Vodacom Challenge is now among the foremost pre-season competitions

in the world, having also twice hosted European giants Manchester United in

recent years. And the return of Tottenham Hotspur will only add to the

legend.

Indeed, the competition is a chance for the best of South Africa to

challenge the best of the rest of the footballing world and provides

thrilling entertainment for fans across the country.

Tottenham Hotspur, who can boast not only two South African’s within their

current squad in Steven Pienaar and Bongani Khumalo, but also the likes of

PFA Player of the Year Gareth Bale, as voted for by professional footballers

across England, Dutch maestro Rafael van der Vaart, Croatian playmaker Luka

Modrić, English wing-wizard Aaron Lennon and with the artistry of French

defender, William Gallas.

There is a special relationship between Tottenham Hotspur and South Africa

and the Club has a long-term partnership with SOS Children’s Villages in

South Africa having funded the Tottenham Hotspur House in the SOS Children’s

Village in Rustenburg.

This will be the fourth time that Tottenham Hotspur has been to South

African shores, having first visited the country in 1963 as holders of the

European Cup Winners’ Cup, and then again in 2003 to support South Africa’s

bid for the 2010 FIFA World CupT. After that they made their 2007 appearance

at the Vodacom Challenge.

The 2011 tournament will be a huge celebration of football and once more

organisers have opted to take the matches around the country. 

All four match venues for the 2011 Vodacom Challenge were used during the

2010 FIFA World CupT and provide world-class facilities for the players and

supporters alike.

The tournament will kick-off at the Peter Mokaba Stadium in Polokwane when

Kaizer Chiefs take on Tottenham Hotspur on Saturday, July 16 (15h00 kick

off).

It is a fitting place to start, given that in the last edition of the

Vodacom Challenge in 2009, Orlando Pirates took on Manchester City at the

old Peter Mokaba Stadium, in the shadow of the new venue as it was still

being built.

The action then moves on to the Mbombela Stadium in Mbombela on Tuesday,

July 19 (20h15 kick off) as Orlando Pirates meet Tottenham Hotspur in a

repeat of the 2007 Final that was won 3-0 by the visiting English side.

It is the first time that Mbombela will host a Vodacom Challenge match, a

new venue to add to the fantastic arenas that have been used in the past.

The all-important Soweto Derby to determine the finalists to meet Tottenham

Hotspur in the tournament will be played at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium

in Port Elizabeth on Thursday, July 21 (20h15 kick off).

This year’s Final will be played at Coca-Cola Park in Johannesburg on

Saturday, July 23 (15h00 kick off), where the trophy will be handed to the

winning captain to usher in a new champion of this most prestigious of

international club competitions.

The match will no doubt be an emotional occasion, coming 10 years on from

the tragic events of April 11, 2001, at the then Ellis Park stadium after a

stampede during a Soweto Derby between Orlando Pirates and Kaizer Chiefs.

Tickets for the matches go on sale at the end of May and can be purchased

through Computicket, Shoprite, Checkers and Checkers Hyper with prices

ranging from R50 to R150. 

Justin Sampson, the CEO of SAIL, says the Vodacom Challenge is the perfect

way to start the 2011/12 domestic season.

“For us to secure a side of the quality of Tottenham Hotspur to take on our

own South African giants in Orlando Pirates and Kaizer Chiefs shows the

tremendous drawing power of the Vodacom Challenge as a competition, and of

South Africa as a footballing destination. The array of attacking talent in

the Tottenham Hotspur side means we will be in for highly-entertaining

football from some of the elite players on the European scene,” Sampson

says.

This year will be the 12th edition of the Vodacom Challenge, sponsored by

Vodacom since its inception.

“The Vodacom Challenge is a crucial part of the South African football

calendar not just because of the quality of the teams on display, but

because it showcases South Africa to the world as a nation with top-class

facilities and a sports-mad public. The competitions lives up to our belief

that Vodacom engages only with the Best of the Best and we are delighted to

once again make the Vodacom Challenge possible in 2011,” says Romeo Kumalo,

Vodacom SA: Executive Director: Commercial.

And once again, the Vodacom Challenge will be used to raise funds to help

give the gift of sight. With the Vodacom Foundation’s ‘Goals for Miracles’

initiative, R150 000 will be donated each time a goal is scored in

regulation time during the tournament to contribute towards free cataract

operations for South African citizens battling with their sight.

Aside from Vodacom as title sponsor, there are also a number of partners to

the event who have expressed their delight at the return of the competition.

“The year 2010 was a great one for South African football with the

successful hosting of the 2010 FIFA World Cup, and the Vodacom Challenge

will serve as a continuation of that spirit of unity so true to South

Africans and their football. We at PEP, South Africa’s largest single brand

retail store, are excited about the return of the competition this year and

look forward to seeing our local sides Orlando Pirate and Kaizer Chiefs,

take on the might of Tottenham Hotspur, who of course have enjoyed such a

wonderful season with a fairytale run in the UEFA Champions League,” said

the PEP Marketing Director, Ms Nobesuthu Tom.

Head of SABC Sport, Mr Sizwe Nzimande, says his organisation takes pride in

bringing the Vodacom Challenge to the people.

“We are looking forward to bringing the 2011 Vodacom Challenge into the

homes of millions of South Africans and take those that cannot be at the

stadiums to the heart of the action. Orlando Pirates, Kaizer Chiefs and

Tottenham Hotspur will provide world-class entertainment and we as broadcast

partners will ensure world-class coverage of the tournament.”

The Gauteng Provincial Government has returned as a partner to the Vodacom

Challenge and it is within this sports-crazy province that the final will be

played at the magnificent Coca-Cola Park stadium.

“Gauteng prides itself on being the Home of Champions in South Africa with

the best facilities in the country and the most passionate fans. We are

honoured to host the 2011 Vodacom Challenge final, and wish our very own

Orlando Pirates and Kaizer Chiefs the very best in this competition. At the

same time we welcome our English Premiership visitors, Tottenham Hotspur,

and trust that they will enjoy their stay in our province,” said the Gauteng

MEC for Sport, Arts, Culture and Recreation, Mr Lebogang Maile.

As the Vodacom Challenge will be visiting the Mpumalanga province for the

first time this year, there will be much more for fans to look forward to

besides the football.

“After the success of the 2010 FIFA World Cup and the many visiting teams

that we have had playing in our province during the 2010/11 Premier Soccer

league season, Mbombela is gaining a reputation as one of the top

footballing destinations in the country. With our proximity in neighbouring

countries Mozambique and Swaziland, as well as the Kruger National Park, we

have much to offer football fans and we look forward to welcoming supporters

from Orlando Pirates and Tottenham Hotspur during this year’s Vodacom

Challenge,” said Clr Lassy Chiwayo, Executive Mayor: Mbombela Municipality.

Polokwane returns as a host for the 2011 tournament, giving the people of

the Limpopo province another chance to showcase their hospitality.

“Our hosting of the opening match of the 2009 Vodacom Challenge was a great

success and we are delighted to have the tournament back in our province at

our wonderful new Peter Mokaba Stadium in Polokwane. We are a destination

that provides a mixture of ancient culture and the great outdoors, and now

we have a world-class stadium that is ready to host two great sides in

Kaizer Chiefs and Tottenham Hotspur,” said Mr Rob Tooly, CEO: Limpopo

Tourism Board.

Getting fans to the stadium for matches in a safe and timely manner is one

of the cornerstones of providing a good match day experience and the

Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) say they are well equipped to

do so.

“PRASA is pleased to be part of such an exciting endeavor.  As a passenger

rail agency, our focus is in ensuring that we keep South Africans moving and

we become the backbone of public transportation, not only to their places or

work, but as part of all social activities that brings South Africans

together” said Mr Lucky Montana, Group CEO: PRASA.

The Vodacom Challenge was first played in 1999 and for the first seven

tournaments featured Chiefs and Pirates against teams from the rest of

Africa. But since 2006, the visitors to the competition have been from the

English Premiership.

Pirates have won the competition on two previous occasions in 1999 and 2005,

while Kaizer Chiefs have five wins to their name in 2000, 2001, 2003, 2006

and 2009 respectively. Of the visiting teams to have triumphed, Democratic

Republic of Congo sides St Eloi Lupopo (2002) and AS Vita (2004) have won,

as well as Tottenham Hotspur (2007) and Manchester United (2008).

2011 VODACOM CHALLENGE FIXTURES:

Sat, July 16          Kaizer Chiefs v Tottenham Hotspur – Peter Mokaba

Stadium, Polokwane (3pm)

Tues, July 19       Orlando Pirates v Tottenham Hotspur – Mbombela Stadium,

Mbombela (8.15pm)

Thu, July 21         Kaizer Chiefs v Orlando Pirates – Nelson Mandela Bay

Stadium, Port Elizabeth (8.15pm)

Sat, July 23          Derby Winner v Tottenham Hotspur – Coca-Cola Park,

Johannesburg (3pm)

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