Former South Africa President Nelson Mandela has entertained the Ghana team in his Johannesburg home the day after their dramatic 2010 FIFA World Cup™ quarter-final defeat against Uruguay.
The meeting followed an earlier one with Winnie Madikizela-Mandela and other members of the family at her Soweto house. Sowetans greeted the players with applause and cheers as they got off their bus, which bore a sloga reading, 'The Hope of Africa'.
Mr Mandela had sent a letter on Friday wishing the squad well for their match against Uruguay last night. The Ghanaian squad had earlier expressed the wish to visit the family to pass on their respects after the tragic passing of Madiba’s great grand-daughter, Zenani, on 11 June.
The Nelson Mandela Foundation commended the Ghana team after the visit. “They represented the continent well,” read a statement from the foundation. “They can return home with their heads held high.”
Though suffering the pain of a penalty shootout defeat, the Black Stars’ run to the last eight captured the hearts of the African people in the first global showpiece to be held on the continent.