When 'Mbazo' was discovered playing on the dusty streets of Johannesburg, the youngster was quickly touted as a successor to former Leeds United and South Africa defensive stalwart Lucas Radebe. Aaron Mokoena is among the three longest serving members of this South African team, having made his international debut in 1999 just a few short months after his 18th birthday. In the process he became the youngest player to pull on the Bafana Bafana jersey, a record that he still holds today.
With almost 100 senior international appearances and counting, he is also South Africa's most-capped player of all time. And despite rumours that his position as captain was in doubt due to a lack of regular first-team football at Portsmouth this season, Parreira will find it a hard job without Mokoena’s experience. Despite Pompey’s relegation and financial woes, he immediately became a fan favourite, and he played a major role in their dramatic run to the final of the FA Cup. Prior to his move to the English game, Mokoena enjoyed spells at a number of well-respected European clubs including Dutch giants Ajax, Bundesliga outfit Bayer Leverkusen and Racing Genk of Belgium.
Mokoena played three times in qualifying for the 2002 FIFA World Cup™ and a full 10 times in the failed attempt to reach Germany 2006. After Bafana competed in qualifying for the 2010 qualifying campaign in order to try to reach the CAF Africa Cup of Nations, which had the same preliminary tournament, Mbazo has appeared in 17 FIFA World Cup qualifying matches.