The South African Football Association (SAFA) has announced Belgian-born coach, Hugo Broos, as the new Bafana Bafana coach. Brooks, the oldest coach to ever be appointed for the South African national team, will take over from Molefi Ntseki who was fired last month following failure to qualify the team to the 2022 Africa Cup of Nations.
The announcement was made by SAFA CEO Tebogo Motlanthe on SABC Sport.
According to SAFA President Danny Jordaan, the decision to appoint Broos was a unanimous decision.
Broos, addressing the media virtually, says, “We will do everything in our power to make sure the team qualifies for the World Cup.” He is expected to touch down in the country next week.
The 69-year-old has had a fair history of club success, winning championships with Club Brugge in 1992 and 1996. During his six-year spell at the club, he also won the Belgian Cup twice as well as the Belgian Supercup on four occasions.
Anderlecht, KRC Genk, Zulte Waregem and the now defunct Excelsior Mouscron are some of the other clubs Broos managed in Belgium.
Outside of Belgium, Broos also managed Panserraikos F.C. in Greece, Trabzonspor in Turkey, as well as an assistant coach at Al Jazira Club in the United Arab Emirates.
But it is his record with the national teams that looks somewhat doubtful. Cameroon is the only national team he has ever coached in his career. But then again, having taken the reins in Cameroon in 2016, he led the team to the Afcon championship. While that cannot be overlooked, is it enough to make him the best man for the Bafana Bafana job?
Broos will be faced with the immediate task of getting the team ready in time for the second round of the FIFA World Cup qualifiers set to kick off in June. Knowledge of the local dynamics will come in handy, but there is no doubt that is where the Belgian will fall short. Bafana needs someone who already knows the quality at hand and is ready to hit the ground running. None of the foreign-based coaches that were earmarked for the position, including the Broos, has those qualities. That is why Pitso Mosimane, Gavin Hunt and Benni McCarthy were back in the running, and settling for Broos already raises question as to whether the right appointment was made.
The association has not confirmed the appointment of Broos’ assistant coach. This following rumours that former coach, Ntseki is earmarked to make a big comeback on the Bafana Bafana technical team bench.
However, Motlanthe would not confirm whether Ntseki was rejoining the national team.
“We are still busy with the talks with Ntseki. I would also like to respect the employer-employee confidentiality,” says Motlanthe.
Jordaan has denied there is a dispute between SAFA and Ntseki.