Igesund: It's not all about the result


The tactician's first game as coach has the nation buzzing, with expectations around the national team higher than it has been for months.

The former Moroka Swallows boss says his chargers will never target anything except a win against any opposition, but insists the clash as a whole is more important than the scoreline.

"What I'm looking for today is the attitude of the players, the commitment, the passion to play for the national team and how they take what they've learnt from training onto the field," he says.

"Those are very important things to consider and I hope the people watching back home will see more passion and commitment from all the players out there. The result is not important, but how we perform and stand up to the challenge counts. I would be happy to lose 1-0 to Brazil, but see a fantastic performance of heart from the players, and them wanting to give their everything for the team.

"These are the things I will be looking for from this game. It will tell me a lot about characters and who is ready for this stage, and who still needs time."

Igesund's message for those who will be watching the game in South Africa is, "Enjoy the game because we are going to go out there and enjoy it. We plan to entertain you guys, and hopefully you see some of the changes we've tried to introduce and the positivity."

One thing that may prevent both Brazil and Bafana from being at their best is the pitch at Estádio Morumbi, which was far from the samba standard one would expect. "Two Brazilian guys came up to me, I assume they were maybe the groundsmen, and asked me what I thought of the pitch very proudly. I told them it was shocking, in very poor condition. It was very bumpy and I suppose it is because there was a game played last night (Sao Paulo drew 1-1 with Inter in the Brazilian league).

"I don't think Brazil will enjoy playing on this pitch either because they will also want to play carpet football. This is more of an observation than a complaint, but it maybe would have been better to play at a stadium that didn't have a match being played in it so soon to a game," says Igesund.

The pitch may be bumpy, but the coach is hoping for a more smooth performance from his team. "The combinations are new, there are a lot of new players, there's a new approach so we have to hope that we'll get to see all that against Brazil. I have full confidence in my players and I am confident we are on the right path for next year's African Nations Cup and the World Cup qualifiers. It is difficult tasks, but not impossible ones."

By Melissa Ready in Brazil.