S'Busiso Mseleku

Igesund has a job - for now

2014-04-22 13:16
Sport24 columnist S'Busiso Mseleku (File)
So Bafana Bafana coach Gordon Igesund has been cleared of any wrongdoing during the African Nations Championship (CHAN) played earlier this year in this country.

Several allegations of shenanigans were leveled against the coach after the national soccer team embarrassingly bombed out of the tournament in the first round.

The coach was accused of trying to influence players to ask for more bonuses from the South African Football Association (SAFA) and leaving goalkeeper and captain Itumeleng Khune out of the last and crucial game against Nigeria while the player purportedly said he was fit enough to play.

The coach insisted that he has followed the advice of the medical team not to field the player.

Why, we were even told that at the time, “several senior players” had nicodemously phoned Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula who had labeled them a “bunch of losers” and told him that they were not the problem but the problem lied with the coach.

So in their wisdom, the South African Football Association (SAFA) formed a task team headed by one f their most prominent and respected members of the national executive committee (NEC), Advocate Norman Arendse.

One cannot be blamed for thinking, or even concluding that SAFA must have taken or thought the matter was very serious to ask somebody like Arendse, whom we know is a very busy man, to look into the matter.

Now, we are told that none of the players, not even Khune, availed themselves to the committee when asked to come and give evidence.

In the end, the committee had to rely on second-hand evidence and thus there was nothing concrete to find to coach guilty and a not guilty verdict was the only conclusion they could reach.

So now Igesund is expected to continue and prepare the national team for their two friendly matches against Australia and New Zealand next month as if everything is kosher.

We are even told that he is already putting plans together for the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers that start later this year.

Is this not a matter of putting the cart way before the horse? How sure is he that his contract will be extended when it expires in about two months’ time?

I think not!

My view is that the relationship between Igesund and his employers at SAFA is irreparable, For now, I think it is matter of tolerating each other just to see off the contract.

It will be difficult for the two parties to work together beyond Igesund’s contract because such relationships require trust from both parties and how do you trust your employers when they have investigated you?

In a working relationship, there should be enough trust that your employers would take your word without the necessity of spending money in an investigation of your behavior.

And how does he look the players who allegedly made those accusations against him, in the eye going forward? Do you think Igesund can still continue to have a cordial relationship with his captain, Khune, after all this?

I don’t think so!

It is for these reasons that I do not see the relationship between Igesund and SAFA being patched up in such a way that they can still work together beyond the current contract.

Mark my words! We will have a new Bafana Bafana coach after the World Cup in Brazil. By the way, one of Igesund’s mandates was to take the national to the World Cup but we will only be watching the spectacle on TV after our boys under the tutelage of the same Igesund failed to make it.

Besides the allegations from the CHAN - which have proven not to be true - Igesund have come short on all the mandates he was given when he took over the poisoned chalice from Pitso Mosimane.

It is indeed a tough job to be a national coach, no wonder it comes with such a high salary package.

S’Busiso Mseleku is regarded as one of Africa's leading sports journalists and an authority on football. He has received some of the biggest awards in a career spanning well over 20 years. He is currently City Press Sports Editor.

Disclaimer:
Sport24 encourages freedom of speech and the expression of diverse views. The views of columnists published on Sport24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Sport24.

Read more on:    safa  |  bafana bafana  |  s’busiso mseleku  |  soccer
NEXT ON SPORT24X

Has rugby lost its soul?

2014-07-24 08:54

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
6 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
Live Video Streaming
  • SS3
    Mon, 28 Jul 2014 @04:00
  • SS4:
    Mon, 28 Jul 2014 @05:00
  • SS7:
    Mon, 28 Jul 2014 @06:00
  • SS5:
    Mon, 28 Jul 2014 @06:00
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Live scoring

 
 
Featured Blog

Dave ask if you would like to meet your local sports heroes and stand the chance to win prizes to the value of over R40 000.

Latest blogs
Vote

The 2014 Vodacom Super Rugby final will be contested between the Waratahs and Crusaders. Who is your money on?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Newsletters Sign up for the Morning Glory, Super 15 and Soccer newsletters

Blogs Yes your opinion counts. Get it out there

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

Mobile Sport24 on your mobile phone - WAP, alerts, downloads, services

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

iPhone Latest Sport24 news on your iPhone

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

TV schedule Plan your couch time with our searchable sport TV guide

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

 
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.