Joke is on Safa suits, just reduce short list to two
SAFA should stop their stupid jokes and reduce to two the five-man short list from which they hope to select a replacement for the fired Pitiful Pitso Mosimane.
No offence to Gavin Hunt, Neil Tovey and caretaker coach Steve Komphela, the real contenders for the Bafana Bafana coaching throne are Shakes Mashaba and Gordon Igesund.
The search for a Bafana coach provides the SA Fumblers Association an opportunity to enact justice - though the jury is still out on whether they know the meaning of the word. Justice, what justice, I hear the silky-suited Safa souls ask?
Memory is a weapon. Those not blessed with tea-bag memories will recall the two greatest injustices this inglorious organisation mismanaging our football committed. It was in 1998 when Igesund's phone rang off the hook on the eve of the announcement of Philippe Troussier's successor. The voices on the other end of the line were congratulating Igesund for landing the job after Troussier's Bafana bombed out in the first round at the 1998 World Cup in his native France. The Safa technical team, which had Chiefs supremo Kaizer Motaung as one of its members, had agreed on the Durbanite as the next Bafana boss. But Trott Moloto was unveiled, instead. Igesund's crime? Wrong skin colour, I suppose.
His record of four league titles with as many teams is inspiring. Mashaba has credible credentials when it comes to coaching national teams. His failure to qualify the under-23 team for the London 2012 Olympics was borne out of the Safa-Premier Soccer League cold war. But Mashaba is the only coach with an impeccable record when it comes to Bafana: 19 matches, 12 wins, five draws and two losses.
But he was hounded out of the job on some trumped-up charges, despite having qualified Bafana for the 2004 African Nations Cup. His crime? refusing to make special concessions for Mark Fish and Benni McCarthy to remain with their European clubs until the eve of Afcon.
Pitso was not the only problem. The core of these players have been together since 2009. What have they given us? The privilege of representing one's country is as lost to them as the concept of cleanliness is to a pig.
Living overseas and playing overseas are two different things. Bongani Khumalo lives overseas and it showed in his poor performance against Ethiopia. Steven Pienaar plays overseas. But do the fans who question whether they get the same level of commitment from Pienaar in the canary-coloured shirt of Bafana than in the blue of Everton have a vendetta against a pint-sized player? Safa's decision to fire coaches is a diversion. What have the suits done to fix the rotting school of excellence? Will Safa ever accept any complicity and culpability in the shambles that our national teams have become?
Not even the dubious distinction of becoming the first association to preside over a team that gets knocked out in the first round of the World Cup could spring them into action. Next time you want to see a joker, don't check a pack of cards. They're all at Safa House.