• South Africa re-appoint Stuart Baxter as national team coach
  • Bafana Bafana are tied on points with Burkina Faso in Group D in Round 3 of Africa's Russia 2018 qualifiers
  • South Africa are 64th in the FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking

South African Football Association (SAFA) have appointed Stuart Baxter as the new coach of their national team following an announcement on Thursday.

The 63-year-old returns for a second spell in charge of Bafana Bafana, having previously led the side during African zone qualifying for the 2006 FIFA World Cup Germany™. He replaces Ephraim 'Shakes' Mashaba, who was dismissed back in December.

Baxter will transition into the role once he completes his current duties as coach of SuperSport United after the SAFA reached an agreement with the South African club to acquire the services of the former Finland coach.

“We are pleased to have finally reached agreement with SuperSport United on the release of coach Baxter,” SAFA CEO Dennis Mumble said in a statement. “SAFA believes that the coach has the necessary skills to navigate the tough qualification path for the Africa Cup of Nations and the FIFA World Cup. We thank SuperSport United for their support towards the goals of the Association and its national teams.”

South Africa currently sit second in Group D of African zone qualifying for Russia 2018, level on four points with leaders Burkina Faso. They face Cape Verde Islands back-to-back in their next set of qualifiers on 28 August and 2 September before hosting Burkina Faso on 2 October.