The poisoned chalice: Last 10 Bafana Bafana coaches sacked
DURBAN - Molefi Ntseki’s 19-month stint as Bafana Bafana coach came to an end on Tuesday. The 51-year-old ultimately paid the price after the national team failed to secure qualification to the 2021 African Cup of Nations (AFCON).
If history is to go by, Ntseki’s sacking was hardly surprising as nearly all of his predecessors parted ways in a similar fashion.
Surely, if so many coaches failed, it points to deep structural problems rather than being entirely the fault of the coach?
Here is a look at the previous ten coaches of Bafana Bafana
After Bafana’s 2018 World Cup qualification campaign was in tatters, Baxter was appointed for a second term in order to build a team that could be competitive at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.
Under the Englishman, Bafana Bafana did secure a quarter-final berth at the 2019 African Cup of Nations and a memorable last 16 victory over hosts Egypt.
However, the national team never managed to achieve consistency under the former Kaizer Chiefs mentor and it was hardly surprising when he resigned as head coach after the Afcon.
Ephraim ’Shakes’ Mashaba
Mashaba was appointed as Bafana coach in 2014 and tasked to develop the team for the 2015 Afcon and 2018 World Cup.
He did help the team qualify for the 2015 Afcon in Equatorial Guinea though they failed to make an impact after failing to advance beyond the group stage, picking up just one point in a 1-1 draw against Senegal.
With the national team in poor form, Mashaba was suspended for disciplinary reasons in November 2016 before being sacked the following month.
Under Igesund, Bafana Bafana reached the quarter-finals of the 2013 Afcon which they hosted before losing in penalties to Mali.
Perhaps Igesund’s most memorable achievement as Bafana mentor was when the national team secured a 1-0 win over then World Champions Spain in a friendly international in 2013.
He ultimately paid the price for failing to qualify the national team for the 2014 World Cup.
After Brazilians Carlos Alberto Pereira and Joel Santana failed to achieve consistency with the national team, Bafana opted for a local coach in Mosimane who was promoted after being assistant coach for four years.
Mosimane won just six out of his 17 matches in charge of the national team. Under him, the national team dramatically failed to qualify for the 2012 African Cup of Nations after playing out to a draw against Sierra Leone, thinking that a draw was all they needed when they actually needed a win.
Carlos Alberto Parreira
Following the sacking of fellow Brazilian Joel Santana, Parreira was appointed as Bafana coach for a second stint in October 2009 with a vision to leading the team in the 2010 World Cup on home soil.
Under Parreira, Bafana failed to progress beyond the group stage of the World Cup, becoming the first-ever host nation to fail to advance beyond the group stage of the world cup.
His stint concluded after the world cup.
Brazilian journeyman Santana was appointed as Bafana coach in 2008 after being suggested by the outgoing Carlos Alberto Parreira.
He led the team in the 2009 Confederations Cup on home soil, where they reached the semi-final, losing 3-2 to Spain in a match where Katlego Mphela scored a brace for the home side.
After a string of eight defeats in his last nine games in charge of the national team, Santana was sacked in 2009.
Carlos Alberto Parreira
1994 Brazilian World Cup-winning coach Parreira was appointed in 2007 with a vision to developing the team to be competitive in the 2010 World Cup.
In his first stint, he failed to guide the national team beyond the group stage of the 2008 African Cup of Nations as they finished last in their group.
He ended up resigning after the tournament for family reasons.
The late Dumitru was appointed and led the national team in the 2006 African Cup of Nations in Egypt. In humiliating fashion, they did not progress beyond the group stage of the competition and failed to score a single goal.
Dumitru paid the price for the poor showing by losing his job, though nobody can take away from the fact that he contributed immensely to youth development in South Africa.
After concluding his spell as coach of the England U-19 team, Baxter came to South Africa for his first stint as national team boss.
He failed to qualify the team for the 2006 World Cup. He did lead South Africa to the quarter-finals of the 2005 Concacaf Gold Cup after they were invited to compete in the North American continental showpiece as guests, losing to Guatemala on penalties.
The youthful Bafana side claimed a memorable 2-1 win over Mexico in the 2005 Concacaf Gold Cup group stage.
April “Styles” Phumo
After Shakes Mashaba’s first sacking as Bafana boss, the late Phumo was appointed to lead the team in the 2004 African Cup of Nations in Tunisia.
Bafana disappointingly failed to exit the group stage after finishing third in their group.