Bafana Bafana coach Stuart Baxter, should now be seeing the light at the end of the tunnel on how he should build the national team going forward following their 3-1 throbbing of Burkina Faso in a world cup qualifying match over the weekend, writes Isaac Ndou.
The British mentor fielded a young dominated starting eleven and anyone who was watching the game would have noticed the team’s balance all positions. With veteran defenders Morgan Gould and Clayton Daniels taking command in defence, stability was manifested as the experience of the two complimented Sifiso Hlanti’s movements in going forward.
In midfield, the starting of Bongani Zungu, Andile Jali and Kamohelo Mokotjo who are all based in Europe, was effective as they took control of the midfield with their experience from abroad. Percy Tau was probably the enzyme in attack as he kept terrorising the Burkina Faso’s defence. He combined well with his teammates Themba Zwane and Sibusiso Vilakazi who all got on the score sheet.
Before the game, Bafana legend and Cape Town City coach, Benni MCcarthy pointed out that Baxter should use European based players if he wants to see out the game. That proved to be true, and going forward, one should say that the team we saw against Burkina Faso, especially the midfield and attack is probably the way to go forward.
A team with the likes Tau, Zungu, Mokotjo, Zwane, and Keagan Dolly has a very promising future in which the coach can build around.
To say that national team will qualify for the 2018 FIFA World Cup would seem to be the thought of the unconscious mind but going forward, Baxter should now focus on the next project and build his ideal team without pressure.
If we say our national team has a vision, the young players and European based players should be the bricks to that vision and in a few years, we will have a solid and competent team representing the nation.
With Baxter in possession of a long term contact with the South African Football Association, he has all the time and resources to build the mean machine the country wants to see.