Bafana needs a magician to qualify

SA National Teams

Former Bafana Bafana midfield enforcer MacBeth Sibaya believes the next senior national team coach should just be a tactician who knows how to grind results.

Bafana start their 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifiers a month from now with a trip across the border to Zimbabwe, before they take on Ghana on home soil.

Sibaya, a respected legend of the game who won 62 senior international caps, says being a football nation caught up in conflict means a ‘finder-finder’ plan is the solution, if qualifying for Qatar is the priority.

"I think we need to find a coach who can grind for results, so that we qualify for the competitions that are coming since that is what we want. Bafana needs someone to pull magic right away because we need to qualify through all the problems," says Sibaya.

"It shouldn’t matter whether the coach is local or foreign because what matters are the results. I believe anyone who will come in with a short program of getting results will be suited for the job, not someone with a long-term plan.

"Anyone who can also come in with a finder-finder plan for these forthcoming qualifiers is what we need because there is no time for a long-term plan. We need an immediate plan since we are in this situation where we need to compete and qualify now for the World Cup. 

"In any case, we have been operating on a ‘finder-finder’ basis like the guys who play dice. You might come good or come bad that way. That plan doesn’t guarantee you results because it is just hoping on luck. Luck shouldn’t be what we depend on but rather something that finds you along the way depending on how you work.

"I am not saying we are not capable but realistically I think whatever the plan is, it is too late now for next year's World Cup so we must just take chances if we want to qualify."  

Alternatively, if the plan is long-term then patience should be practised, but he doubts there would be such tolerance from the powers that be.

"If not going the ‘finder-finder’ way then we have to go back to the roots and create a generation that is going to represent Bafana Bafana in future. Germany did it by creating a generation that went on to be successful and it took the whole country to make that happen.

"If we want to go that route, we must be patient enough because we must work from the bottom up. What can be sustainable is what we have created because that way we know what we did from the bottom going up, instead of just hoping for the best at the top without having cultivated at the bottom.

"By this I mean structuring our football from the bottom and not at Bafana Bafana, where it is a stage of pursuing the ambition with the quality that you have," he adds.

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