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Walter Mokoena teaching at university

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Baxter set for a tricky shuttle between two employers after getting SuperSport to the Nedbank Cup final

By Mark Gleeson | 2017-05-21 14:20:09.0

Stuart Baxter will now have to do a juggling act after qualifying SuperSport United to the Nedbank Cup final for a second year.

The penalty shootout victory over Chippa United in Saturday’s semifinal in Mdantsane extended his stay at the club until almost the end of June‚ forcing the new Bafana Bafana coach to now to split responsibilities over the over six weeks before permanently assuming his duties with the national team.

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Baxter promised SuperSport he would see out the season‚ even though relations between him and management have turned testy over the last weeks after his protracted flirtation with the Bafana job.

“I’ll be coming back for the final‚" Baxter said.

"Don’t ask me how we are going to do it! You can call me the boomerang coach … I keep coming back!”

Baxter will not be travelling with the SuperSport side on Monday to Gabon where they play CF Mounana in Libreville on Tuesday in their second group match in the Confederation Cup.

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“I’ll be at SAFA House. I’ll be doing my preparation for the Nigeria game.

"I’ve already done some work on the squad‚ I’ve done some work on the opponents. I’m reading Nigerian newspapers every day and trying to find out what they thinking.”

But when the SuperSport squad return home from Gabon on Wednesday‚ Baxter will return to training at the club for Saturday’s last match of the season at home to Platinum Stars.

“After that‚ we’ll have to figure how to do it with me coming back after the Bafana match in Nigeria to help prepare for the final‚” he said.

On reaching the cup final again‚ Baxter added: “I’m just glad for the players. They said to me before the game‚ ‘it’ll be a great way to send you off’. But that’s irrelevant.

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"The important thing is that if the players work as hard as this lot have done this year‚ they deserve this final. And I’ll do everything I can I help them finish it off with a trophy.”

SuperSport had lost 3-0 to Chippa in a league match in Port Elizabeth in midweek but Baxter used only three of those players in Saturday’s semifinal.

“We were very happy that we rotated the squad because a lot of them had fresh legs‚ which is why I think probably we had so many chances in extra time because Chippa were dead.

"They couldn’t get out‚ they put subs on for fresh legs but couldn’t get out (of their own half). We knew they were tired and we were working them by moving the ball from side to side and moving the ball between their lines was what we wanted to do.

"But we didn’t get a goal in normal time nor in extra time either. So I was thinking to myself ‘this is going to go pear-shaped’ but we got through it.” - TMG Digital/TMG Sport