pitso mosimane

Photo: Carl Fourie / Gallo

Five coaches who could replace Baxter at Bafana Bafana

Safa could soon find themselves looking for another man to hold the poison chalice.

pitso mosimane

Photo: Carl Fourie / Gallo

Reports suggesting Stuart Baxter is on his way back to Kaizer Chiefs are picking up steam and, while this may please the Glamour Boys, it presents another headache for Bafana Bafana, who will have to be on the search for another coach.

The Englishman’s contract with the national team runs until 2022 and, as results under his watch have hardly been admirable – a move to Naturena could be a win-win for both Amakhosi and Safa.

Baxter enjoyed great success with the Soweto giants in his tenure with the club, and it was with him at the helm that they picked up their last piece of silverware.

Should he be the answer to the question of who will be Kaizer Chiefs new coach, another pertinent question rises, as far as the national team is concerned?

Read: Percy Tau: Sundowns set to accept latest offer from Brighton

Who will be Bafana’s new coach should Baxter leave?

Pitso Mosimane – Mamelodi Sundowns

The Mamelodi Sundowns boss could – much like Baxter and his predecessor, Shakes Mashaba be set for a second stint with the national team.

At club level, Mosimane has achieved great honours, as he conquered Africa in 2016 with the Pretoria outfit, which has been one of the more dominant forces in local football during his stint.

Given his coaching pedigree, Safa could be tempted to lure him back to the Bafana set up, where he spent a little over half a decade as both assistant and head coach between 2006 and 2012.

Carlos Queiroz – Iran

Another man who could be set for a second stint is Iran coach, Carlos Queiroz who – under him – Bafana qualified for the 2002 Fifa World Cup, which, to this day, remains the last time South Africa has ever achieved that feat, as they only appeared in the 2010 edition by virtue of being hosts.

The Portuguese mentor was, however, not around to finish what he started, as he fell out with Safa shortly before the global showpiece event, but was hardly left despondent, as he joined Manchester United as part of Sir Alex Ferguson’s coaching staff ahead of the 2002/03 season.

Queiroz has previously been linked with a return to Bafana, which was reportedly hampered by his commitments with Iran but – with his contract with the Asian country now close to its expiry date – a move back to Africa may be on the cards.

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Herve Renard – Morocco

Another man who was present at the World Cup is Frenchman, Herve Renard, who took Morocco to their first appearance in the tournament in 20 years.

The Frenchman has extensive experience in African football, having been on the continent for the best part of the last decade, taking up the reins for the Zambia, Angola and Ivory Coast national teams.

Following Mashaba’s abrupt departure from the post in November 2016, Renard was in line to take up the hot seat, but things would not work out as the job went to Baxter instead.

Watch: Morocco vs Iran: Player gets clobbered, coaches spray him with water

Shakes Mashaba – unattached

An unlikely – yet possible – appointment would be that of Bra Shakes, who left under a cloud when he was sacked for insubordination, after Bafana’s null victory over Senegal in the World Cup qualifiers in 2016.

A return for Mashaba for a third dig would require some mending of bridges from both parties but could be something to consider as the national team looked to be on the up under his charge.

Rhulani Mokwena – Orlando Pirates

A dark horse in the race is Orlando Pirates assistant coach, Rhulani Mokwena, who has been earmarked by Baxter himself as a future Bafana coach.

The 32-year-old was tipped for a role in the Englishman’s technical team, following his impressive work with the Buccaneers which has seen the Soweto giants rise up from the ashes to claim a CAF Champions League spot for the first time since 2013.

Read: Safa eyeing England-based brothers for Bafana