At a press conference at SAFA House in Johannesburg, the
Brazilian was optimistic about his future at the helm of the South
African team. "Which coach would not want to coach the South
African team, a country that is due to host the World Cup,"
said Santana. He added that "This is not a challenge, it is a
The new Bafana Bafana boss has a proven track-record with Brazilian clubs, but has not yet coached a national team. He was comfortable with his experience though and alluded to his time as a player for Vasco da Gama and his 25-year tenure as a coach and quipped: "I did not parachute into football". Santana is certainly familiar with pressure - before assuming the South African job, he was in charge at Flamengo in Rio de Janeiro, with a demanding fan base of no less than 32 million.
Santana was complimentary of the standard of African football, saying that "the quality of African football is very high, and this is why I came to South Africa." He added that this would be a good building block and that he believes that if they "are able to tactically and technically get the best out the players, there is the potential to have an excellent World Cup".
There will be some consistency in the coaching style and philosophy of play. Santana indicated that he has worked with assistant coach, Jairo Leal, and that they "share the same football philosophy."
On Wednesday, Santana will announce the squad who will face Nigeria on 1 June in their first match on the road to the 2010 finals. He reassured the South African public that "You will get to know me through my hard work and I will do it with honesty and discipline."