Baxter: It won’t be easy

The current SuperSport United coach was on Monday officially presented as the new national team coach following a comprehensive search, whittled down to three main candidates: Herve Renard, Hugo Broos and Stuart Baxter, from which the latter was finally selected.

“As the South African Football Association [SAFA] we are pleased to welcome Stuart Baxter back at Bafana Bafana,” Dr Jordaan said. “We are confident we have made the right choice and with him at helm, we will qualify for both the World Cup in 2018 and the Africa Cup of Nations in 2019.

“With our search, we made sure we go for the right man for the job and we would like to thank the media for keeping us on our toes with this appointment – because at the end of it all this is our team, all of us. Good luck to the new coach.”

READ: Five-year contract for Baxter

Baxter said happy to be back, but acknowledged the difficult task at hand.

“I am back in this seat because I have belief – I believe that with the wealth of talent in this country we can qualify for things,” he said. “While I know that this position goes with a lot of criticism, I also believe that if we work together as a country and take out all the negativity we can get somewhere. So my appeal is, with your support this national team can be great again – criticise if you must, but support is crucial.

“This is not an easy task I am going into, but I have confidence that we will overcome.”

The starting point for the coach is to now receive all materials in preparation for the upcoming match against Nigeria on Saturday, 10 June 2017 in Uyo, Nigeria.

These include the list of players who played in recent national team matches, video analysis and site inspection in Nigeria which will be undertaken by Bafana Bafana Team Manager Barney Kujane, who departs on Tuesday, 16 May. He will then prepare a full report for the coach when he returns.

Upon receipt of the information, Baxter will then finalise his squad for Nigeria with his technical team, to be announced on 25 May.