SAFA President Danny Jordaan has described the late Bafana Bafana legend, Phil Masinga as a rare breed.
“Chippa”, as Masinga was popularly known, died of a cancer-related disease at a Johannesburg hospital on Sunday. He was 49.
Masinga was admitted to Tshepong Hospital in Klerksdorp two months ago before he was transferred to a Johannesburg hospital last month where he was diagnosed with cancer.
“We have lost a giant of South African football, this is a sad day,” said Jordaan.
“I am really gutted. I saw him last Sunday before I flew to Dakar and although he was not feeling well, he was in good spirits. I promised to visit him again sometime this week, and now our hero is gone.
“Phil was a loyal servant of the game, on and off the field. His goal against Congo, which took us (South Africa) to our first World Cup in France in 1998, is still the most celebrated goal in the country to date.
The late Masinga was born on 28 June 1969 in Klerksdorp in the North West and played for, among other clubs, Jomo Cosmos; Leeds United in England together with Lucas Radebe; Saint Galliens in Switzerland; FC Bari in Italy; and Salernitana.
Leeds United tweeted soon after the passing on of the football legend: “It is with great sadness that the club has learnt of former striker Phil Masinga’s passing. The thoughts of everyone at the club are with his family and friends.”
CAF deputy secretary general, Anthony Baffoe, wrote: “We have lost a hero in Phil Masinga. May his soul rest in peace.”