The senior national team head coach position is vacant after the sacking of Shakes Mashaba in December and although he is in the process of appealing the decision, the South African Football Association (SAFA) announced on the weekend that a new man will be in the hot-seat by the end of the month as preparations for upcoming World Cup and African Cup of Nations qualifiers get underway in earnest.
Amongst those confirmed by SAFA as having sent in their CV’s are former Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini, Milovan Rajevac, who worked with Ghana and Algeria, former Real Madrid coach Bernd Schuster, Samson Siasia – a former Nigeria coach, former Egypt national team boss Hassan Shehata, and Italian manager Giovanni Trapattoni.
Others speculated to be in the list of possible options are Mamelodi Sundowns and former Bafana coach Pitso Mosimane, former Bafana Bafana and Real Madrid coach Carlos Queiroz, two-time AFCON-winning mentor Herve Renard, the vastly experienced Claude Le Roy, SuperSport’s Stuart Baxter, former England boss Roy Hodgson, and Bidvest Wits’ Gavin Hunt.
Now Ertugral, who quit Pirates in a storm last November after a 6-1 hammering by SuperSport United, has thrown his name into the hat in no uncertain terms.
The fiery Turk, who has coached at Pirates, Ajax Cape Town, Golden Arrows, Black Aces, Santos and Kaizer Chiefs, has allowed his emotion to get the better of him on occasion. But there can’t be much argument about the commitment and passion he has shown towards South African football since first arriving in 1999.
When contacted by Kick Off with regards to talk that he is eyeing the Bafana job, Ertugral confirmed that would gladly accept the opportunity.
“I don’t want to put pressure [on SAFA’s selection process] but in South Africa there are more than 62 players that I’ve developed myself,” he said.
“And these players, and most of them or some of them, are still in the national plans. Secondly, [I have] the track record of winning all the trophies in the PSL – twice with Chiefs, three times with Ajax Cape Town.
“As much as people think I don’t stay long, I have always been in South Africa [he has owned a house in Cape Town for many years]. I love the country more than anything else and will always love, or let me say, look more to the youngsters, which is always in my heart.”
To complicate matters, the 57-year-old is also being linked with a big job back in his home country.
“Having said that, I saw the Turkish media saying I’m coming for the technical director job of Galatasaray and that I refused it, and I’m going to stay in South Africa and not going to take it,” said Ertugral.
Ertugral’s only previous international experience came when he coached the DR Congo between 1995 and 1996.
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