Thursday, June 30, 2022

Are foreign coaches adding value to our football?

In the Premier League, four sides are under the guidance of Zimbabwean tacticians while the other four have employed Zambian gaffers. Only Miscellaneous, BMC, Uniao Flamengo Santos, Great North Tigers, Mogoditshane Fighters, BDF XI, Police XI and ECCO City Greens have shown confidence in the local who coaches.

Radio Botswana commentator, Tiro Lepotokisi, said that it is high time clubs have confidence in the local talent. He argues that some of the foreign coaches who come into our country do not bring anything special. Lepotokisi has hit at local administrators for what he called lack of faith in “their own brothers”.

He added that Batswana still have wrong attitude of believing only a foreigner can bring development to our own game.

“We have local coaches who are at par with these foreigners but our administrators do not have faith in the local talent. But at the same time, I blame local coaches like (Innocent) Morapedi who have been in the game but do not want to come forward and show that they’re equally good,” he said.
Lepotokisi added that recently he watched a Zimbabwean Premier League match involving Chicken Inn but he was not impressed. He believes that if the Zimbabwean coaches are that good, they must go and improve their own football.

Former Extension Gunners’ darling, Naphtally ‘Scara’ Kebalepile, concurred with Lepotokisi, adding that Botswana Football Association (BFA) continues to spend in developing coaches while they are not given a chance to excel at the highest level.

“I think our administrators are undermining our own coaches. I do not see any value these foreign coaches bring into our country. The rankings say a lot and make us look stupid by continuing to rely in Zimbabwean coaches yet we’re rated above them,” said Kebalepile.

The former star has challenged football administrators to start believing in locals because they are the future.

Another football veteran, Jim Kelly, said that if the Zebras managed to qualify for AFCON under a local coach, it means that Botswana has talent. He gave an example of BMC coach Daniel ‘Chicco’ Nare who has continued to do well.

Nare turned Gunners into a competitive side in a few months after years of struggle before he crossed the floor to their neighbours early this year. Recently, when Mochudi Centre Chiefs’ coaching post got vacant after the departure of Zimbabwean Rahman Gumbo, many thought the wise thing Chiefs would do is to hand the baton to long-serving assistant Innocent Morapedi.

But Magosi management crossed the border and landed the services of former Township Rollers tactician Madinda Ndlovu. The move surprised many people but Chiefs chairman Ernest Molome has defended their decision.

“By going for Madinda, it does not mean we do not have faith in our own people. I still believe that foreign coaches add value to our league and if it wasn’t of their input, I do not believe that football would be where it is right now. People should not be misled by the rankings because they’re very good foreign coaches,” said Molome.

BFA technical director, Sonnyboy Sethibe, believes that since the association has taken a decision to license coaches, the situation would improve. He acknowledged that in the past, Botswana clubs brought mediocre coaches into the country just because they are foreigners. He said whenever a local club employs a foreign coach, his office would be consulted to check if that person meets the requirements.

“A foreign coach must bring something we do not have in our football. You must understand that if our football is going to be dominated mostly by foreign coaches, we run the risk of having our development being overlooked,” pointed out Sethibe.

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