Bafana Bafana

ANC welcomes Shakes selection

2014-07-26 17:08
SA Under-20 coach Shakes Mashaba (Gallo Images)

Johannesburg - The appointment of Ephraim 'Shakes' Mashaba as the new head coach of Bafana Bafana on Saturday, was welcomed by political parties.

The African National Congress on Saturday welcomed the appointment of Mashaba.

"We congratulate Mr Mashaba on his appointment which is duly deserved based on his experience and expertise," spokesperson Zizi Kodwa said in a statement.

"Soccer continues to play a critical role in promoting nation building and social cohesion in South Africa."

The Democratic Alliance wished Mashaba well in his new job.

"Coach Mashaba's extensive experience in local football and success with South Africa's national youth teams is exactly what Bafana Bafana needs to reclaim their spot amongst the continent's football giants," DA MP Solly Malatsi said.

"His previous tenure with the senior national team remains the most successful tenure by any Bafana Bafana coach."

SA Football Association (SAFA) president Danny Jordaan announced Mashaba's appointment at a packed Safa House on Saturday afternoon, ending weeks of speculation about the future of the national team.

Mashaba, 63, replaces outgoing boss Gordon Igesund, whose contract, which runs until the end of August, has not been renewed.

Malatsi said that SAFA and the Premier Soccer League (PSL) should work together to help rebuild Bafana Bafana into a winning team.

"This partnership should prioritise compatibility between PSL fixtures and Bafana Bafana matches to ensure that players who have been selected for national duty are released on time to allow the team to have the best available players for all matches," he said.

"We hope that coach Mashaba's tenure will herald a new era of success for Bafana Bafana."

The ANC congratulated Mashaba and urged South Africans to rally behind him and the team.

"We wish the coach, and the team under his stewardship, great success with the trust that youth development will be at the centre of their programmes and outlook," Kodwa said.

"The ANC calls upon all South Africans to rally behind the national team and coach, giving them the necessary support, to propel our nation's football ambitions."

The Soweto-born mentor is no stranger on the local scene, having previously held the Bafana position in 2002, before he was appointed head coach of the Swaziland national team four years later.

Saturday's announcement means Mashaba leaves his role as national Under-20 and Under-23 coach.

Read more on:    bafana bafana  |  anc  |  shakes mashaba  |  soccer
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