Bafana Bafana

Mashaba puts it out: ‘I’ll be back’

Shakes Mashaba (Gallo Images)
Shakes Mashaba (Gallo Images)

Johannesburg - Former Bafana Bafana coach Ephraim “Shakes” Mashaba has said he will return to the managerial hot seat soon.

Speaking at the announcement of the 2017 Nedbank Ke Yona team in Johannesburg this week, Mashaba said the national team’s coaching position was not a closed chapter for him.

“I don’t doubt that I will one day go back to coach Bafana Bafana,” Mashaba said.

He said Stuart Baxter had been a coach at Bafana before and was back.

“My track record allows me to go back to Bafana.”

He said it was only an off-the-pitch incident that put paid to his job.

Mashaba was sacked as Bafana coach in December following the conclusion of his disciplinary hearing, in which he was found guilty of gross misconduct, insubordination and bringing the South African Football Association (Safa) into disrepute.

He was suspended by Safa after an ugly incident at Peter Mokaba Stadium in Polokwane, where he was said to have disrespected his employers after Bafana’s important 2-1 win over Senegal in a crunch World Cup qualifier in November.

“I don’t really know what happened that evening. I will be happy if someone were to come and tell me. No one has told me to my face what the problem was because, in football, they take the long route,” he said.

“I want to be like an owl that knows where it is going and when to pounce.”

The Nedbank talent scout said he was currently negotiating with one of the Absa Premiership clubs, but he refused to reveal the name.

A total of 18 young players from across the country realised their dreams of playing professional football as they drew the names of the 16 PSL clubs they would go to for a month.

The players were identified through the annual campaign that sees coaches zigzag the county and unearth unknown footballing talent.

Other coaches involved in this programme are Khabo Zondo, Owen Da Gama and Mike Mangena. They sifted through 13 000 soccer hopefuls, who were put through rigorous training and boot camps, to come up with the final Ke Yona team that will take on the 2017 Nedbank Cup Champions, SuperSport United.

The Ke Yona team series is aired every Sunday on SABC1 at 5.30pm. The match is scheduled for September 3.

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