JOHANNESBURG – Former Bafana Bafana defender Matthew Booth insists that Benni McCarthy should stay in the PSL for at least another season before accepting the role of being the national team’s new coach.
McCarthy is expected to be announced as the new Bafana coach today. His appointment comes after the dismissal of Molefi Ntseki, who failed to guide the team to the 2022 Africa Cup of Nations.
McCarthy was not the primary target of Safa after they were snubbed by Carlos Queiroz and Pitso Mosimane. McCarthy, though, finds himself on Safa’s radar after an impressive stint at Durban side AmaZulu.
The 43-year-old has taken Usuthu from being perennial relegation candidates to serious title contenders this season as they are second on the Premiership standings with 50 points, one behind leaders Mamelodi Sundowns who have two games in hand.
McCarthy will likely finish the season at AmaZulu later this month before being a fully-fledged Bafana coach ahead of the 2022 World Cup qualifiers next month. Booth, though, believes his old teammate should rather continue his coaching career at AmaZulu.
“I would have liked to see him stay for another season at AmaZulu. Obviously, what he’s done in a short space of time is nothing short of a miracle,” Booth said.
“I can understand why Bafana, after having a number of coaches reject them, went for him.
“But as a natural progression, just like a footballer goes through certain stages in his career, a coach goes through that as well. I would like Benni to stay for another season in the PSL before he moves to the senior national team.”
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Booth has no doubt McCarthy will succeed at Bafana if he is given enough support and freedom to select his own backroom staff. His assistants at AmaZulu, Siyabonga Nomvethe and Moeneeb Josephs, also represented Bafana.
“This is the most important part. If he’s given the right support and allowed to bring his own team in, and surround himself with capable and qualified personnel that he wants, Benni can become successful at Bafana,” Booth added.
“I think he’ll bring a sense of arrogance and aggression. You can’t afford to be too arrogant in football because there’s a fine balance. It’s a team sport. That’s what I’ve seen at AmaZulu, players believing in their abilities and (a) sense of worth as a team,” Booth said.
“He’s also brought a new way of playing.
“He’s wanted his team to play quicker on the ball, with high intensity and aggression.”