Thursday Mar 08, 2018. 15:30
South African national team coach Stuart Baxter has been left unhappy after discovering his next two opponents for this month.
The English coach said he was planning to go to the King’s Cup in Thailand to face Slovakia and Arab Emirates, but the South African Football Association has told him to play Zambia and Zimbabwe.
Bafana have met the Warriors and Chipolopolo a number of times and the manager was left upset, but said he’s not trying to rubbish SAFA.
The former Kaizer Chiefs and SuperSport United coach also unveiled his plan called a “radical transformation”, an approach he outlined for Bafana aimed at introducing young players.
“I’ve been massively upset this morning because we’ve only just finalised our fixture for this window‚” Baxter said to reporters.
“We were going to go to Thailand. And after a long and winding road I’ve only just found out where we’re going.
“I’m not trying to rubbish SAFA‚ I’m not trying to rubbish my own association.
“I submitted a four-page report about what I believed could be an important springboard‚ and then there was another report about four years in bigger brushstrokes.
“What I said about the immediate was that the King’s Cup in Thailand represented an opportunity to give our players experience against Slovakia – Europe; UAE – the Gulf; Thailand – Asia.
“Three different styles‚ humid weather conditions‚ a full house, it would have been a great opportunity.
“For whatever reason that didn’t work and that is not meant as criticism.”
Having failed to reach the 2017 CAF African Cup of Nations and this year’s FIFA World Cup, Baxter is preparing for this month’s 2019 AFCON qualifier against Libya.