Steve Komphela's coaching skills under the spotlight against Gabon tonight
Posted: 15 June 2012 Time: 12:05
Steve Komphela is aware that his coaching abilities will come under the Safa spotlight tonight when Bafana Bafana take on Gabon in an international friendly in Nelspruit.
Following South Africa's mediocre show during their 1–1 draw against Botswana in last weekend's 2014 World Cup qualifier, the Bafana interim coach is gunning for a victory that might convince the country's football authorities that he is the right man to take over the hot seat on a full time basis. Komphela is due to be interviewed by the Safa Technical Committee on June 8 for the post of Bafana head coach. With Safa having already interviewed the four other short listed candidates for the post – Gordon Igesund, Gavin Hunt, Neil Tovey and Shakes Mashaba – much of Komphela's impressions are likely to hinge on the results of his second match in charge of the national team. While Igesund (who has won the PSL title with four clubs) is widely tipped to become Bafana's next substantive coach, Hunt and Mashaba also have proven track records under their belts.
_quote "If one has to be judged on the result of the match against Gabon, then so be it," says Komphela, in a chat with KickOff.com. "There are certain things in life that you cannot change and I am prepared for any eventuality. "We have been working hard in preparation for this match and the players are very positive," adds Komphela, a former Bafana captain. The Free State Stars mentor says tonight's match will showcase the talent of a number of players eager to prove their worth at international level. "The average age of the players in the team, without (Siyabonga) Nomvete, is 26. Clearly there is a need to freshen up because we need to be thinking about the kind of players we will be fielding in the few years to come," Komphela says. Unlike Bafana, Gabon come into tonight's match on the backdrop of a better start in their 2014 World Cup qualifying campaign. Gabon posted a hard fought 1–0 home win over Burkina Faso in their first match, followed by a goalless draw away to Niger. While almost all of Gabon's players are based in Europe, the team's effectiveness is centred on French-based forward Pierre-Emerick Aubameyeng – a rising star in African football and one of the star players during the 2012 African Cup of Nations.