April Fool's Day story: Bafana Bafana to appoint Arsenal Wenger as coach

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How many fell for the April Fool's joke on Saturday morning? Check your calendar. It's April 1. Now read the article again for laughs.

Stuart Baxter was a smokescreen! Bafana Football Association has confirmed that they've named the economics professor as the next South Africa mentor.

The Gunners coach had already hinted of his move to South Africa earlier this month, if only the English media took him seriously.

"I know what I will do in my future. You will soon know, very soon," Wenger honestly revealed. He really did say that long before April 1.

What Arsene Wenger knew then, but didn't want to reveal, was that his future was already decided and, tiring of Arsenal's seasonal Top 4 race, the longest-serving manager in the Premiership would be moving into international management with the South Africa national team. 

Knee-jerk Arsene fans, who will support him again after a good result for Bafana, stated that if Wenger used up his stadium savings to bring Lionel Messi to Emirates Airways then Arsene would be welcome back at The Gunner's stadium. Wenger instead preferred to stick with the 2022 vision that he share's with Safa's Dr Danny Jordaan. 

This is where Dr Danny Jordaan and Safa's Vision 2022 comes in, and Arsenal Vanker (the South Africa spelling) is the perfect model for Bafana Bafana, the Boys Boys. 

 

SAFA President Danny Jordaans casts his vote at Caf election

Jordaan voted for Wenger at the Caf headquarters in Ethiopia

 

“People need success," said Safa's Danny Jordaan.

"We must make sure Bafana are a great success. Contracts and money are subject to negotiation." he added.

Little did South African football fans put two and two together and realise that Jordaan was already referring to Wenger as Safa searched for Bafana's new coach.

“We need someone with a credible record at club level. A great number of highly qualified coaches have shown interest in this job,” Jordaan said.

“We have been paying good salaries and can’t be deterred from appointing a good coach because of money.”

The appointment of Wenger has seen South Africa's odds of finishing fourth at the FIFA World Cup slashed to 2-to-1 with most reputable betting outlets. The odds of Bafana winning the FA Cup have also been slashed. 

"The appointment of Arsene Wenger shows the world that we here at Safa are determined to finish fourth at next year's world cup in Russia," Safa's CEO Dennis Mumble declared at the press announcement.

"With a man of Arsene's standing, we are convinced this is a new dawn for, not only South African football, but football on the whole of the continent too," he added.

 

Lucas Radebe of Kaizer Chiefs

Radebe's mum on McCarthy role

Less well known is the role that Lucas Films Radebe played in sealing the deal between Safa and Wenger. Apparently he was promised funding for the Leeds United youth centre.

"You look around and ask [yourself]: 'Do we have a local coach who can occupy that hot seat and be respected?' I don't know," Radebe really told a Soweto newspaper.

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"We needed someone who is going into buy into the vision we have as an organisation. The aim is to sustain the success," Radebe was obviously referring to Wenger all along.

"The appointment of Arsene Wenger shows the world we here at Safa are determined to finish fourth at next year's world cup in Russia," Safa's CEO Dennis Mumble declared at the press announcement.

"With a man of Arsene's standing, we are convinced this is a new dawn for, not only South African football, but football on the whole of the continent too," he added.

So, fans hoping to finally watch Bafana Bafana pass the ball around aimlessly for 90 minutes have got their wish, while Wenger will no doubt be speaking to Home Affairs soon to get a gaggle of unknown 17-year-old French kids naturalised and ready to play for Bafana.

There you go. The end of our April Fool's Day joke. Remember, Arsene Wenger is not Bafana Bafana coach. Don't get caught out next year. Good luck.

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