Bafana Bafana

Not what Doctor ordered as SAFA snubs Khumalo

Doctor Khumalo celebrating South Africa's win in the 1996 African Cup of Nations final. (Gallo Images)
Doctor Khumalo celebrating South Africa's win in the 1996 African Cup of Nations final. (Gallo Images)

It was apparently not what the doctor ordered for SAFA when it recently snubbed the offer for former Kaizer Chiefs legend Doctor Khumalo to participate in the process of unearthing talent for the embattled Bafana Bafana.

The SAFA technical committee, under growing criticism for its handling of Bafana affairs, asserted that despite the fact that the position of the organisation's technical director had remained vacant for almost 10 months following the departure from the organisation of Neil Tovey, the issue was adequately covered by the national association itself.

Ironically the proposal for Khumalo to be roped in was supported by now sacked Bafana head coach, Molefi Ntseki, but the technical committee apparently thought they knew better.

As to the reason for Khumalo's KO from participating in the growing Bafana crisis, it has been suggested that previous comments made by the former Chiefs star about the way SAFA was being run under president Danny Jordaan may well have been a factor.

In the meantime, Bafana are in a veritable crisis following the jarring elimination from next year's Africa Cup of Nations Finals in Cameroon at the qualifying stage and critical 2022 World Cup qualifying matches due to begin in less than two months from now without a head coach or technical director in harness.

And the suitable appointment of both these key officials is bathed in urgency in view of the looming World Cup qualifiers, despite SAFA's nonchalant approach to the controversial matter of whether local or overseas officials should be roped in.

Any national coach appointed without an intimate knowledge of South African soccer generally and talent in particular will have his hands full for the opening World Cup qualifier against Zimbabwe. But clearly someone of vast experience at the top level is required at this testing time.

As for the technical director's role, it is difficult to imagine anyone but a South African could fit the bill.

Ideally, as well, the two appointments should be compatible and act as a team in their own right.

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