Home Sport Doubts over Rivaldo’s availability due to ‘phantom injury’ setback

Doubts over Rivaldo’s availability due to ‘phantom injury’ setback


The defender has been playing regularly for club and country without any issues regarding the injury to his right foot

Rivaldo Coetzees dream to ply his trade in Europe seems to be in tatters after he failed a routine medical examination on Saturday.

STUART Baxter has a crucial decision to make with regard to the availability of Bafana Bafana central defender Rivaldo Coetzee.

The South African senior national team is preparing for back-to-back 2018 World Cup qualifiers against Cape Verde. On Friday, they face the north-west African country at the National Stadium in Praia, with the return leg scheduled for Tuesday, September 5, at the Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban.

Coetzee suffered a major setback to his European ambitions on Saturday when a failed medical halted his proposed move to Scottish champions Glasgow Celtic, whose medical department discovered an underlying problem with his right foot and the deal was not concluded.

Coetzee will now return to Ajax Cape Town, where the club will offer him the necessary medical care to fully rehabilitate, after which it is hoped the 20-year-old will be able to land the overseas move he so desperately desires.

The defender has, however, been playing regularly for club and country, without any issues regarding an injury to his right foot.

For Bafana coach Baxter, therefore, the question is whether he will continue with Coetzee in the squad, taking into consideration the latest developments. Even though Coetzee has been playing without any discomfort, Baxter now has to believe that there is an injury issue, coupled with the player’s mental state.

There’s no doubt the young defender is gutted.