Mamelodi Sundowns coach Pitso Mosimane will support new Bafana Bafana coach Stuart Baxter but feels Gavin Hunt better deserved the opportunity to lead the senior national team.
Baxter was confirmed as Bafana coach on Thursday to take over from sacked Ephraim “Shakes” Mashaba to end a four month period where the senior national team was without a coach.
“You know who my candidate was for Bafana Bafana‚” Mosimane said after Sundowns were held to a 2-2 Absa Premiership draw by Platinum Stars‚ a result that saw Hunt’s team‚ Bidvest Wits‚ take a three-point lead in the title race.
The Downs coach continued: “Gavin Hunt should have been given a run before Stuart and Bra Shakes (Baxter’s predecessor‚ Shakes Mashaba‚ who was sacked in December) came back.
“Let him get a chance‚ you understand what I am trying to say. Hunt has done very well in the country and he is about to win the league.
“Honestly speaking‚ I thought he deserved to be given a chance and I would have supported him.
“I would support Baxter because I am a South African and I would like to see you guys (the media) go to the World Cup.”
Mosimane added that under the circumstances‚ Baxter is a good choice and that the current SuperSport United and ex-Bafana and Kaizer Chiefs boss will have his Downs counterpart’s unconditional support to make the job of helping Bafana improve easier.
“He is credible‚ he is the right one in terms of organisation‚ knowing the country. I am not talking about taking the team to the World Cup and Cup of Nations before‚ but I am talking about principles‚” Mosimane said.
A good relationship between the national coach and his counterparts at club level is important and Mosimane expects that Baxter will have an open door policy for engagements that will benefit both parties.
“Trust me‚ Stuart is going to call local coaches to say‚ ‘Let’s talk about what do you think‚ where‚ how and what’‚” the Sundowns and also ex-Bafana coach said.
“He is going to do that. Carlos Parreira did it‚ I did it‚ Gordon Igesund never did it and I don’t know the reasons behind that.
“I will support Bafana Bafana and Stuart and I was also going to support Huntie (Hunt) if he was given the opportunity.”