Who will fill Mosimane’s boots?

2012-06-09 20:16

With about six months left to prepare for next year’s Africa Cup of Nations, the new Bafana Bafana coach will not only have to hit the ground running but also bring out the best in players, writes Timothy Molobi.

All five candidates identified for the Bafana Bafana head coach position have declared themselves ready and available to assume the hot seat.

After the sacking of Pitso Mosimane, Safa named Ephraim “Shakes” Mashaba, Neil Tovey, Steve Komphela, Gavin Hunt and Gordon Igesund as their candidates for the job.

The five are expected to go through interviews on Wednesday and Thursday with the successful candidate due to start next month.

Safa’s technical committee chairperson Fanyana Sibanyoni said they did not have the luxury of time, hence they wanted to move quickly to appoint the coach.

The new coach will prepare for next year’s Africa Cup of Nations tournament with a series of friendly games.

So far matches against Poland and Zambia have been confirmed for October and November.

Sibanyoni said they were looking to someone taking the team forward.

While Mosimane’s mandate was to qualify for the Africa Cup of Nations and take the country to the top 30 in the Fifa ranking, they could not take more risks and wait for him to falter again on his third mandate of qualifying for the 2014 Fifa World Cup in Brazil after the one-all draw with lowly-ranked Ethiopia last weekend.

Safa should have been awake to the fact that Mosimane’s last win came in August last year. They bucked their firing trend and stuck by him after the Afcon qualifying fiasco.

“We spent millions on the team before the World Cup going to Brazil and Germany and everybody can see the foundation that Parreira has laid. Now we can’t spend more money developing the players, it is time to deliver,” said Sibanyoni.

He refused to divulge the 12 criteria that his committee has developed.

“It would be like giving the candidates the memorandum for the exam. We want to hear what these coaches have to offer to the country but we need someone who will take our football forward.”

Sibanyoni said the new coach should be able to travel the country searching for talent.

“We believe there is a lot of talent in the regions and provinces because the national team is not only about the PSL. This is one of the reasons we want a local coach who knows all the corners of the country.”

One of Mosimane’s excuses was the dearth of talent in the country but Sibanyoni did not think this was the case.

How Mosimane failed:

» Failure to move out of Carlos Parreira’s shadow and be his own man;
» No solid succession plan;
» Made no changes to the team since taking over in 2010;
» No clear philosophy;
» Loyalty to certain players (this backfired as those he trusted never came to the party);
» Played names rather than a team;
» No clear selection criteria;
» Favoured captain Steven Pienaar who was not pulled off even on off-days; and
» Failure to solve South African soccer’s Achilles heel of goalscoring.

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