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Parreira's exit "not a crisis" - SAFA

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Parreira's exit "not a crisis" - SAFA

by Simangaliso Zwane
22 Apr 2008
BuaNews Online
BuaNews Online

The resignation of Bafana Bafana coach Carlos Alberto Parreira will not plunge the senior soccer national team into crisis, says South African Football Association (SAFA) President Molefi Olifant.

President Olifant was addressing journalists during an impromptu media briefing called by the association at SAFA headquarters in Nasrec Johannesburg on Monday. The conference attracted large numbers of local and international media.

The SAFA president said he does not believe the national soccer team is on the brink of a crisis because the association would retain the services of Mr Parreira's highly recommended assistant coach Jairo Lopes Cesar Leal to continue the Brazilian's "vision and philosophy" for the national team.

"There is no crisis. A good coach is as good as his assistant and a good assistant is as good as his coach," said Mr Oliphant.

Mr Parreira also confirmed Mr Oliphant's sentiments by saying he has every reason to believe that the national team will still have the edge in his absence.

"My assistant coach is one of the best in the world and he has been with me for so many years with so many teams," said Mr Parreira.

The football association has issued a statement thanking the high-ranking Brazilian coach for his work during his tenure with Bafana.

The SAFA president said he was grateful that Mr Parreira has decided to make himself available as a technical advisor to the national side.

"We are grateful to Coach Parreira's decision to make himself available as the Technical Advisor, his commitment to continue helping us in terms of regular contact with the Bafana Bafana technical team will assist us to advance our course of building a competitive Team for the World Cup," said Mr Oliphant.

SAFA NEC Members thanked coach Parreira for his contribution in identifying young talented players and laying a solid foundation in preparing the team for the 2010 Fifa World Cup.

Coach Parreira told journalists that he regrets the decision he has had to take and said it was one of the hardest he had to make in his coaching career.

"It has been a very difficult decision to make. We had reached a point where we had done most of the job, the difficult part of job. I'm saddened by the state of affairs. I had a dream to participate in my eighth world cup as a coach.

"When I first came to South Africa the media asked me why I was taking the job, and I said because South Africa is hosting the Fifa World Cup, which is the biggest sporting event in the world and I want to be part of it. I have made myself available until a new coach is found to ensure a smooth transition.

"I am not happy with such a decision, there is no winner here, but that does not mean there is a loser," said Mr Parreira.

During his tenure with Bafana, Mr Parreira has won nine, drew six and lost six games.

He will be remembered for their last emphatic 3-0 win over Paraguay.

In thanking Coach Parreira, SAFA Vice President, Dr Irvin Khoza, asked for sensitivity to the circumstances relating to Mr Parreira's wife's health.

"All of us would have probably handled the matter the same way, because family is important to any man," said Dr Khoza. - BuaNews

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