IGESUND DISAPPOINTED WITH SAFA’S DECISION
By: Mbasa Khwaza
Outgoing Bafana Bafana coach Gordon Igesund said he was disappointed by the South African Football Association’s decision not to renew his contract, which expires in August.
Addressing the media at the SAFA House on Tuesday, Igesund said that despite his disappointment, he would look back fondly on his time at the helm of the Bafana team.
“I would just like to start off by saying that it has been my distinct privilege and honour, as well as the highlight of my career, to have been the South African men’s senior national team coach for these last two years ,” Igesund said.
Igesund expressed appreciation and support from the people who worked closely with him.
“Together we have had a good run, which has seen the foundations having being laid for the vision and plan I had for Bafana Bafana in order for them to move forward.”
Igesund was mandated to qualify for the FIFA World Cup in Brazil and reach the semi-finals of the Africa Cup of Nations earlier this year, but he failed. Bafana were knocked out in the first round of the CHAN 2014 tournament on home turf earlier this year, but the tournament did not form part of his mandates.
In official matches under Igesund, Bafana played 14, won 7, drew 5 and lost just twice in the process. There have been a number of friendly games but Igesund said the victory over current world champions Spain “will be a night I will never forget and South Africa should never forget”.
“I am incredibly proud of the fact that we have seen the team move up the world FIFA rankings whilst under my tenure and hope we can continue to do so moving forward under my successor.”
South Africa is currently ranked 65 on the FIFA rankings.
Igesund said he will always be available to assist Bafana wherever possible and wished his successor all the best.
“I believe this team can do wonderful things with the vast talent I have seen and I believe I hand over a national team that is in a far better state than the one I inherited.
“Under the current guidance of SAFA I have no doubt we will continue to improve and I wish everyone involved with the national team the very best going forward.”