South Africa is my home, says Parreira
with very good feelings.
“That’s why, what the players did today was unbelievable. What they did in the seven months’ preparation, I just have to thank them for,” the coach said after Tuesday’s win.
The victory was Parreira’s first at a World Cup with a country other than Brazil — with whom he won the world title in 1994 — despite having coached a record six nations to the tournament.
The coach was also a fitness trainer for the 1970 World Cup-winning Brazil team, regarded as that country’s best-ever side.
On Bafana’s performance, Parreira said he does believe luck can play a role in a team’s chances at the World Cup.
“[Liverpool manager] Rafa Benitez once said that to succeed in football you have to be technically sound, well organised and have a bit of luck.
“And I think that was there for everyone to see from South Africa at this World Cup. There were two shots [by Katlego Mphela against Mexico and France] that hit the post and if they had gone in we would have been in the last-16.
“I amafirm believer that luck does play a role.
“But I’m proud of these boys. When I arrived in November, South Africa were ranked 90th in the world and since then we
only lost one game.
“These boys today showed the work has paid off, and that they have an identity now. Of course weare disappointed we did not qualify, but I don’t consider this a failure.
“And life goes on. There is a lot of work in front of [South Africa]. There is the 2012 African Cup of Nations to qualify for and the 2014 World Cup. I said to the boys, ‘I want to be your guide in Brazil in 2014. Keep working’.”
Parreira said he believes the SA Football Association has already made a decision on who his successor will be, and the coach’s assistant, Pitso Mosimane, is believed to be the chosen candidate.
Bongani Khumalo has a massive future with Bafana.
Carlos Alberto Parreira has restored pride in the Bafana jersey.