(Getty Images: Jamie McDonald)
With the 2010 FIFA World Cup fever at maximum, there is a possibilty of South Africa’s Bafana Bafana playing Brazil’s Samba Boys in the historic event due to start tomorrow. This becomes a story not only because they are both coached by the Brazilians. There is the juicier part.
Brazil had not won a World Cup in 24 years to 1994. All the stakeholders had been concerned big time. The Samba Boys always entertained and had big names to their fold, like Zico and Tafarrel.
The question was posed as to why the drought. Professor Carlos Alberto Parreira was tasked to take the team to USA ’94. He was critised before the tournament of playing a dull and Europeanised kind of football.
The Coach took more flake for actually picking up Dunga, of all people, to the World Cup. That was an insult of first degree status. The team was so unBrazil, they made sure to win so they could to come back home. The criticism came from the media and custodians of the beautiful game.
Dunga took his place in the team for one simple reason. Parreira reckoned Brazil missed all the years playing ‘shoe-shine paino’ without any player taking responsibility in and out of the field of play. This strong character of Dunga brought the stability element their team lacked for 24 years, and the rest is history.
Taking Dunga to that World Cup was an arrogancy unknown. Could it be Dunga inherited the arrogancy as well, seeing Parreira left the controvential Benny McCarthy, and he Ronaldinho?
The former Brazilian anchor may now be facing the master who took him from nowhere and stuck with him in life threatening situations. They know each other well. I think it was no coincidence that Parreira was not at the Confed Cup when Bafana fell to a last minute undeserved Daniel Alves free kick in the semi final last year.
As we await the epic battle of the giants, let’s not forget to enjoy the beginning, and indeed the progress of this well organised event.
Your team will have another short sometime later but for now, Ke Nako – It’s time.