Reuters Soccer Blog
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Carlos Alberto Parreira’s return as South Africa coach has been widely pilloried in the country’s media, a stark contrast to the almost universal approval he received when he took the job the first time round in late 2006.
Parreira has been enticed back in the wake of the firing of compatriot Joel Santana last week, as the World Cup hosts battle to drag their national side out of a spiral of long-term mediocrity.
Parreira was supposed to be the architect of a plan to build a competitive South African side to set the 2010 tournament alight.
But when his wife fell ill, he had little option to quit and return home to Rio de Janeiro.
Joel Santana arrived for what he thought was a routine review of his work with his South African Football Association bosses on Monday and within hours was packing his bags for a return to Brazil, ending his tenure as the 15th coach employed by South Africa in the last 17 years.
The run of poor results in recent internationals plus last year’s early elimination from the African Nations Cup qualifiers, had left Bafana Bafana in deep crisis, a team without any confidence or direction and running out of time before hosting the 2010 World Cup finals.