Parreira seeks release of European-based players

JOHANNESBURG - South Africa coach Carlos Alberto Parreira will meet European club coaches this week to try and win the early release of players for World Cup preparations, the South African Football Association said.

Parreira is holding training camps in Brazil next month and in Germany in April to prepare the World Cup hosts for the finals but with most of his key players based in Europe, he has only been guaranteed the release of home-based candidates.

"This trip is just to make personal contact with the coaches of clubs to try and release players for the camps of Brazil and Germany," Parreira said in a statement on Wednesday.

"The real target is the local camp in May in South Africa because most European leagues will not be completed, but if we can get the players earlier that will be great.

"The clubs don't have to release the players but we will be happy if they could as this would greatly help in terms of our preparations for this difficult tournament ahead of us."

Parreira will take a squad to Brazil for three weeks in March and they will also spend a week in Germany before holding a third camp in May ahead of the opening game of the World Cup against Mexico on June 11.