Bafana Bafana

SAFA to keep Igesund

2013-06-18 20:30
Gordon Igesund (Gallo Images)
Johannesburg - Bafana Bafana coach Gordon Igesund's future is not under discussion, South African Football Association (SAFA) president Kirsten Nematandani said on Tuesday.

"One thing must be made clear here, the coach's future is not under discussion," he said.

"He (Igesund) is the Bafana coach and we have a contract with Gordon until next year, and I don't know where the media is picking up the story that we would meet the coach to talk about his contract. There is nothing like that."

Bafana lost 2-1 to Ethiopia on Sunday, which in effect knocked them out of contention for a place at Brazil 2014.

The defeat led to speculation that Igesund's contract would be reviewed, and that he would meet his employers soon to chart the way forward.

However, Nematandani said SAFA would not meet Igesund about his contract, because that item was not on the agenda.

"We are aware of the media reports doing rounds about Gordon's future," Nematandani said.

He said Igesund had a contract which would run until next year, and only then would his future come up for discussion.

Bafana trail Ethiopia by five points in Group A of the 2014 World Cup qualifiers, with one match to go against Botswana.

The SAFA president said it was important to stay focused on the challenges at hand.

"We still have that (Botswana) match to play, and also the Cosafa Cup next month," Nematandani said.

"Once we are done with that, we have to start looking at the CHAN (The African Nations Championship) as well as the qualification for the 2015 Afcon."

Nematandani was impressed with the fighting spirit and commitment shown by the players, despite some travel problems in Cameroon.

"We have to commend Bafana for their fighting spirit against CAR and Ethiopia. If anything, our players can never be accused of not trying, especially against Ethiopia.

"They went down fighting, and were just unfortunate on the day. We have to give credit to Gordon and his technical team for instilling that kind of fighting spirit," said Nematandani.

He said he was aware of reports that Ethiopia was facing Fifa sanctions after fielding a suspended player in their qualifier against Botswana.

"In all fairness, this has nothing to do with us," he said.

"It is a matter between Botswana and Ethiopia, but we will wait and see."

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