Sunday, May 9, 2021

Are the low scoring charts an indication of lack of proper development?

Before the weekend matches, the leading goal scorers for the beMobile Premier League were the duo of Lemponye Tshireletso and Hendrick Moyo with 14 goals apiece. Tshireletso does duty for Mochudi Centre Chiefs, while Moyo is at Orapa United. What is fascinating about these two players is that they are not outright strikers, but are often used as attacking midfielders.

The downside is that they have eclipsed many proven strikers in the country and have been impressive on the field. A normal striker’s tally should pass the 20 goal mark and it is doubtful that the current beMobile leading goal scorer will surpass that mark.

It is important to note that most of the past renowned leading goal scorers were mostly foreigners from neighbouring countries like Zimbabwe and Zambia. Some of the strikers included the likes of Terrence Mandaza, Master Masitara and Patrick Kaunda. This season, the available foreign strikers are not doing quite well and are firing blanks for most of the time. On the other hand former Premier League coach and now a youth development coach, Stanley Mwaanga, told Sunday Standard that the problems regarding the current low scoring rate boils down to the issue of development.

He said it would not be a problem for strikers to find the back of the net if development is done properly. “The current season is almost over and I doubt the current leading goal scorers will reach twenty goals or above. But what I mainly see as a problem is lack of proper development at the grass roots level. The Botswana Football Association (BFA) is trying by all means to develop young players but I feel that it is still not enough. I have been working with young players for years now and I always see where the challenges lie,” he said.

On the other hand football analyst, Fobby Radipotsane sees it in a different way. He told Sunday Standard that the problem this season was the lack of creativity and consistency with the teams’ midfielders. He said they did not leave up to the required standards and hence low scoring charts.

“How do you expect strikers to score if they do not have enough supply from the midfield? They can’t score at all if nothing comes by their way. This season we have seen midfielders failing to do what they were supposed to do. I mean you would find a team winning by five goals in one match and then go on to lose the following two or three games. It is not good at all for our league. We need to see midfielders who are supplying and scoring in every match day as is the case in other developed countries,” he said.

On the other hand one coach who preferred anonymity pointed a finger at the BFA for failing to thoroughly develop football. “What is happening as far as scoring goals in the Premier League is concerned should ring warning bells or else it will have long-term implications. In order for any country to move forward they need to have more qualified coaches so that they teach kids the right basics. BFA is not doing enough to train more coaches. As a country we should strive to be always ahead of other countries and be able to export more qualified coaches. We are currently reaping what we sowed and it was long coming,” he said.

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