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Gordon Igesund sacked by SAFA

Posted: 3 June 2014 Time: 09:28

News yesterday afternoon that SAFA had decided against renewing Gordon Igesund’s contract as Bafana Bafana coach was about as unexpected as a PSL striker missing a half-chance in front of goal.

Everyone knew it was going to happen; what we wanted to know was who would replace Igesund as the national team starts preparing for the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers.

So SAFA president Danny Jordaan’s comment that “the process for finding a new coach will start immediately after this press conference” was hugely worrying.

Bafana’s first qualifier – a daunting trip away to Sudan – is on September 5/6 … that’s three months from now. During that time we need to still find a coach who must then familiarise himself with players and get them to understand and buy into his style?

Not clever. 

But then we have a habit of shooting ourselves in the foot over the last two decades, be it the firing of a coach just as a major tournament is about to start, or waiting till the last minute to wield the axe during qualifiers.

That being said, I don’t believe for one second that SAFA has not already contacted their next coach.

Rumours abound that negotiations have already taken place with former Bafana coach Carlos Queiroz, and that they are only waiting until after his World Cup duties with Iran end to make this public knowledge.

If this is the case, it would signify some serious egg on the face for the governing body given their ungracious sacking of the Portuguese coach just before the 2002 World Cup – for which he qualified the team.

But Queiroz, in my opinion (and this is an opinion piece), would be a good call. He has some form of knowledge of the country and its ways from his previous time here, while the expected appointment of close friend Roger de Sa will further cut down time on getting to know local players.

More so, Queiroz is an excellent tactician (just ask Sir Alex Ferguson), and him qualifying Iran for the 2014 World Cup was no easy task.

Crucially, he is also a coach that embraces technology – something which a high-ranking SAFA official recently told me was one of Igesund’s downfalls, and one of the reasons why it’s unlikely that Shakes Mashaba would get the job.

As for Igesund, I believe he did really well given some of the demands made of him.

He took over a side in the dumps in the midst of a disastrous 2014 World Cup qualifying campaign and restored some national pride and feel-good factor, for a while at least.

I still believe his mandate of qualifying for the World Cup and a semi-final spot at the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations was unrealistic, especially given the space we were in at the time.

Of course there was the victory against Spain – which Igesund never missed a chance to remind us of – but the disastrous CHAN campaign earlier this year, coupled with public spats over players (remember the calling up of Orlando Pirates players for a friendly prior to a crucial CAF Champions League clash), saw his star rapidly fade.

So there we are again, a 23rd coaching change in 22 years. Should it be Queiroz or whoever comes in, let’s hope the administrators, media and fans can look further ahead and allow the coach to build a team for the 2018 World Cup and beyond, rather than expect instant results.

Follow me on Twitter @KickOffCooper

Livefyre comments on this story...

Khosi4Chiefs
posted: 2014-06-03 07:39:56

That's your opinion.

Treble champ "Superbrand"
posted: 2014-06-03 07:40:21

Right call wrong time, its long overdue, this chimpanzee should have long been sacked!!!!!

Treble champ "Superbrand"
posted: 2014-06-03 07:41:55

Kaizer chimpanzees can have their man now......GI you did an excellent job promoting chimpanzees at the expense of the nation though. You can start now by being an assistant to the CV chef!!!

deleted_21083860_deleted_21083860_SisterP
posted: 2014-06-03 07:42:42

Best decision by safa. What kind of a coach who is bad mouthing players in public

Treble champ "Superbrand"
posted: 2014-06-03 07:45:58

Hamba Gordon Masende uyo coacha izimfene nabo Letshwenenyane e Nazoorena!!!! kade bekulindile!!!

msdboy
posted: 2014-06-03 07:46:26

wrong call how can you blame him our players cant just play some of them they even score on their own net so wht should he do

deleted_21083860_deleted_21083860_SisterP
posted: 2014-06-03 07:48:02

U were happy to blame pitso now that ur bass is fired u want to blame players

KCisCoachLess
posted: 2014-06-03 07:52:04

Our structural foundations are flawed...no coach will ever succeed here

Dotoh
posted: 2014-06-03 07:52:20

Wrong call,we will complain about the foreigner coach like we did on previous one

Backpage
posted: 2014-06-03 07:52:22

Ryan Cooper in the first place you one of those people who were running naked been happy when Carlos was fired in the first time cus you were happy you have achieved your promise to some PSL and SAFA people that you will never write anything positive about Carlos so he can get fired now question is y are you now writing and saying good thing about him? Are you his Agent now? pls let the panel choose who ever they want without your influence. we all know SAFA is control by media they listen to all useless things you guys write about.

Braveheart de XVI
posted: 2014-06-03 07:52:26

"Oooh, I was never sure of a God before
But I know he must exist:
He created this" John Legend

I'm so happy this guy wont coach Bafana anymore. Thanks God. I don't trust this Queenroz too. Jacob Sakala and Ian Gorowa can do the job

Ghost 23
posted: 2014-06-03 07:52:42

Dear Mr. Cooper-U know what they say about Opinions and their likeliness to a certain human anatomy right. 

kgethis
posted: 2014-06-03 07:54:55

Good call in fact it was long overdue.

FriendofBatman
posted: 2014-06-03 07:57:05

I wasn't even working in SA football when Queiroz was first here. Get your facts right before criticising.  packpage

Silver Line KBY
posted: 2014-06-03 08:00:18

Thank you SAFA, job well done although you took long to sack him.

Oooozil
posted: 2014-06-03 08:00:22

Cowditor packpage Joh this cowditor just put "package" on his place.

BaseMoss
posted: 2014-06-03 08:00:50

Honestly the last time Carlos was here, he did a great job. He is the last coach to have qualified South Africa to the world cup directly and not by default or back doors. He has matured and has gained a lot of experience working with the best that there is in the world of soccer. So I agree with you Mr Cooper. He will settle in well with Rodger as his assistant. Honestly speaking some people are good as assistant coaches and not Head Coaches and one of them is Rodger De Sa and Jairo Leal. So I'll be happy if they appoint Carlos than Stephen Keshi. Good opinions and analysis you raised there Ryan.

madzam1
posted: 2014-06-03 08:01:02

GI's record is not that bad. But he did fail reach all the mandates given to him by SAFA. I think his major downfall was he also hung on to the same old players that had failed under Santana, Parreira & Pitso before. By the time he introduced new blood it was way too late to save his carreer.

Terry-Chiefs
posted: 2014-06-03 08:02:11

there's no wrong call here, Gordon was given a mandate to and he failed not once, not twice, but three times. he did not qualify of the world cup, did not qualify for Africa Nations cup, nocked out of CHAN in our home ground???? nonsense maan. But Carlos is not the right man for the job. we need shakes and his future under 23 team thats the future bafana.

yellow machine
posted: 2014-06-03 08:03:21

Hey wena cow editor get ur facts ryt GI was not a 23rd coach for Bafana plz don't mislead the public. I'm nt gona tell u hw many coaches did we have bt certainly not 23.

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