Word reaching the Siya crew is that Carlos Queiroz and Pitso Mosimane, the initial top candidates for the Bafana Bafana job, are unavailable – possibly leaving Benni McCarthy as the only other viable option.
The national team job became vacant a month ago when Molefi Ntseki was sacked for failing to qualify for next year’s Africa Cup of Nations in Cameroon, and SAFA said they would spare no costs in appointing his successor.
Queiroz, a former Bafana coach before he went on to work at Manchester United, Real Madrid and with the Portugal national team, was the outright favourite and widely expected to make a return to the job he quit on the eve of the 2002 World Cup.
And it was also thought he would be immediately available as he was sacked by Colombia in December, though he wouldn’t come cheap.
SAFA said money would not be a stumbling block.
Mosimane was another candidate shortlisted by the SAFA technical committee, but Siya sources have informed the crew that the ex-Mamelodi Sundowns coach has no intentions of going back for a second stint as Bafana coach.
‘Jingles’ is head coach at Al Ahly, having been appointed there in October last year following the shock announcement that he was leaving Downs after seven years!
Now, does that then leave McCarthy as the last man standing?
His immediate impact at AmaZulu since his appointment in December has been hard to miss, and last night’s 5-1 drubbing of his former side, Cape Town City was another statement, which pushed them just one point behind DStv Premiership log leaders Sundowns, in the race for the title this season.
Indications are that Gavin Hunt’s name has also been mentioned, but some within the SAFA structures feel Kaizer Chiefs’ poor run since his arrival puts him at a disadvantage even with his pedigree as a four-time league winner.
Reports also linked Philippe Troussier, Hugo Broos and Herve Renard to the job - but maybe that was just mere speculation, especially after the association delayed the annoucement of the Bafana coach last week citing travel restrictions due to Covid-19.
Who will SAFA go for now that their preferred candidates have effectively turned down any advances from the federation for the plum job, with a little over a month before the 2022 World Cup qualifiers kick-off?
It appears SAFA’s hopes were on landing Queiroz…
Have a look at some of the Bafana coaches since 1992...