Igesund’s Outgoing Statement
The South African Football Association called an official press conference this morning, Tuesday June 3, where out-bound Bafana Bafana head coach, Gordon Igesund, addressed the media.
SAFA announced yesterday that they would not be extending Igesund’s stay with the FA as head coach of the national team, and would start their search for a suitable replacement.
Igesund addressed the media at SAFA House, the FA’s headquarters in Johannesburg, where he expressed his appreciation for his time at the helm, and wished the team well going forward.
"Firstly, I would just like to start off by saying that it has been my distinct privilege and honour, the highlight of my career to have been the South African men's senior national soccer team coach for these last two years."
"Of course I am deeply disappointed with SAFA's decision undertaken yesterday to not extend my contract beyond August, however this is football and it's the nature of the game."
"I have called this press conference in order to have the opportunity to personally thank those who have supported me throughout the ups and downs - from the SAFA executive committee, right through to the technical staff and players. There are too many names to mention each and everyone individually, but certainly I would like to thank the likes of Danny Jordaan, Serame Letsoaka, Barney Kujane and Alex Heredia, who have worked closely with me throughout this journey."
"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."
"This is illustrated through the introduction of many young players introduced under my reign some of which, like Dean Furman, May Mahlangu and Ayanda Patosi for example have gone on to establish themselves as true leaders and future stars of this team of ours."
"We also managed to overcome the old stigma of not being able to score goals at the top level. Over the last 32 matches we have managed to score in excess of 1.5 goals a game."
"In official matches, we played 14, won 7, drew 5 and lost just twice. There has also been a number of friendlies for me to test ourselves, and the victory over current world champions, Spain, will be a night I will never forget and South Africa should never forget. That game, that result, is an indication of what is possible with a plan and a vision. Bafana does have the talent and the ability to compete and defeat the very best, and we must never forget that."
"All in all, looking back, as a South African, 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."
"Whoever that is, I wish him all the best with his appointment and will always be available to assist Bafana Bafana wherever possible. 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."