20 Oct 2009

South Africa fire football coach

6:09 am on 20 October 2009

South Africa have fired coach Joel Santana just under eight months before the country hosts the 2010 Fifa World Cup football finals.

The departure of the 60-year-old Brazilian comes after a run of eight losses from their last nine games.

Santana's departure had been widely expected after defeats last week in friendly matches in Norway and Iceland.

Santana was South Africa's 15th coach in as many years and in an 18-month spell he had 27 matches in charge, 14 of which were lost. There were 10 wins and three draws.

The removal of Santana could open the door for a return of compatriot Carlos Alberto Parreira, who had to resign in 2008 when his wife fell ill.