who have followed my writings over the years would vouch for me that I am seldom
wrong ... more especially when it comes to matters football.
fact, I would have been a millionaire by now if I got even a single dollar
every time I wrote “I told you so”.
I called this past Saturday’s 2018 Soccer World Cup qualifier between Bafana
Bafana and Senegal totally wrong.
local boys dished one of their best performances in recent times when they beat
the Group D favourites 2-1 at the Peter Mokaba Stadium. The star-studded Senegalese
team that came to these shores sitting on top of the group after beating Cape
Verde, were made to look ordinary by a sleek Bafana Bafana side.
victory sees South Africa share the top with Burkina Faso who scored a 2-0 away
victory at Cape Verde. Bafana are on four points and only second on goal
difference as they have conceded two goals to Burkina Faso’s one.
result has raised hopes that our beloved Bafana might just make it to the World
Cup finals in Russia in two years’ time. To do this, they need to top the group.
I was preparing to post pictures of myself on social media eating my hat and
showing a newly-developed boep as a result of eating humble pie, BOOM! the South
African Football Association (SAFA) dropped a statement on Sunday evening that
coach, Shakes Mashaba, had been suspended.
statement went on to say that Mashaba would not be accompanying the team to
Mozambique for Tuesday’s friendly as he had to appear in front of a
out that Mashaba who has perfected the art of shooting himself in the foot,
allegedly told his SAFA bosses where to get off when they tried to congratulate
him on the victory.
the coach went on to accuse the SAFA suits of setting him up for failure.
the heat of the moment, an emotional Mashaba is said to have even threatened to
rearrange the face of a SAFA employee who tried to intervene with his fists.
if this indeed did happen, it's unbecoming of someone in charge of a national
asset such as the national team.
as mentioned above, Mashaba has become a master in shooting himself on the
foot. His vitriol has been aimed at the media in the past and this time around
he seems to have gone a tad too far.
believe that Mashaba, who has been walking the tightrope for quite some time,
might have just left the door ajar for SAFA to eventually fire him.
are reminded of an incident way back in 1992 where then Bafana coach, Stanley
“Screamer” Tshabalala who was under pressure as positive results were not
forthcoming, took his frustrations on veteran journalist Sy Lerman by slapping
him in the face.
gave SAFA the opportunity they were looking for. Tshabalala was hauled in front of a
DC, found guilty of that famous charge “bringing the association into
disrepute” and was fired.
fate now lies in the hands of the DC but many will feel that he was the
architect of his downfall, should he be made to walk.
chances are that not many will miss him.
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 over 30 years. He is currently
City Press Sports Editor.
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