RUSTENBURG, South Africa - Cameroon and South African officials traded accusations on Wednesday after Samuel Eto'o failed to arrive in South Africa for a match honouring Nelson Mandela. Barcelona striker Eto'o was due to play for Cameroon in Wednesday's international against the 2010 World Cup hosts in an annual challenge match honouring the former South African president. The three times African Footballer of the Year failed to arrive, however, despite being named by the Cameroon Football Federation in the squad for the match in Rustenburg, some 200km north west of Johannesburg. Cameroon coach Otto Pfister told Reuters the South African Football Association had botched arrangements for tickets and visas for several key players, including Eto'o. Also absent were captain Rigobert Song and Newcastle United full-back Geremi. The South African Football Association said they had paid for a business class ticket for Eto'o but he failed to board a flight in Frankfurt on Tuesday. "The airline confirmed to us that a boarding pass had been issued for him but that he did not get on the plane and was a no show. We tried to make alternative arrangements but were unable to locate him," said South African Football Association chief executive officer Raymond Hack.
19 November 2008
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