Cape Town City are set to reveal the name of their new head coach at a press conference in the Mother City this morning – and the final three names in the hat are Benni McCarthy, Ruud Krol and Muhsin Ertugral.
The City coaching post is vacant after Eric Tinkler quit to join SuperSport United.
Social media was abuzz all day yesterday with speculation that former Bafana Bafana striker McCarthy is slated to be the next head coach of the ambitious Cape club.
Club boss John Comitis, when contacted, wasn’t prepared to divulge anything, except to say “there is a surprise in store”.
Comitis has had meetings with McCarthy and former Orlando Pirates coach Ruud Krol about the coaching position, while Muhsin Ertugral, who has had a long friendship and association with the City owner, has been sounded out as well.
Turkish-born Ertugral has extensive experience of coaching in the PSL and on the continent. Locally, he has been at Kaizer Chiefs, Ajax Cape Town and Mpumalanga Black Aces. In fact, his last stint was at Black Aces and it’s that very same squad that has now morphed into Cape Town City. Ertugral will certainly know the players very well.
McCarthy, though, is said to be the front-runner and, if he doesn’t get the main job, then he could certainly be in the running for the assistant position. The 39-year-old has vast experience of playing in Europe with Ajax Amsterdam, FC Porto, Celta Vigo, Blackburn Rovers and West Ham and is Bafana’s record goal-scorer with 31 goals. Originally from Hanover Park, he recently acquired his Uefa A coaching badge.
The only coaching experience McCarthy has had so far is a stint as assistant coach at Belgian side Sint-Truiden, where his head coach at the time was Chris O’Loughlin – and it is interesting to note that O’Loughlin was also among the applicants for the City position.
Krol is a Dutch football legend, having played alongside the great Johan Cruyff. In 1979, he finished third in the European Footballer of the Year competition, behind Kevin Keegan and Karl-Heinz Rummenigge. Now 68, Krol has vast experience of coaching on the African continent, having steered Orlando Pirates to the PSL title and winning the Tunisian championship with CS Sfaxien.
With City participating in the CAF Confederations Cup next season, there’s no doubt Krol or Ertugral’s experience would be of huge benefit. In contrast, McCarthy has little experience as a head coach, both in the PSL and on the continent.
But, ultimately, it’s Comitis’ decision – and all will be revealed this morning.