Out of the 16 Premier League teams, only six sides FC Satmos, Notwane, BR Highlanders, BMC, Police XI and BDF XI are headed by local coaches. According to investigations by this publication, despite having the same credentials like some of the foreign coaches, the local coaches earn ‘peanuts’.┬á In the past week, there were mixed reactions from the football fraternity after Paul was quoted in the social media saying, “We (local coaches) should be given a chance to lead the clubs and be accorded the same respect like foreigners.”
Speaking from Maun on Friday afternoon, Paul said, “I don’t regret my earlier statement. It is time that we are given the same respect just like those foreigners who come here. Most of the local coaches have the credentials to lead the so-called big clubs but we’re not given a chance. I don’t have a problem with a foreign coach coming here as long as he is adding value to our football. This nonsense of our administrators looking down on us must come to an end.”┬á
The former BMC head coach added that what pains him most is that foreigners always get big pay cheques but the same treatment is not extended to local coaches. “The problem is that some of our administrations want to pay us peanuts and then they expect more from us in terms of results. Some of them claim that we should prove ourselves if we want more but some of us have performed miracles in the past. I’ve won the Coca-Cola Cup with BMC in 2007 beating giants like Centre Chiefs on the way and what more should I do?” Paul continued. One Premier League coach who did not want to be named shared the same sentiments with Paul that local coaches are treated like trash. “Look at Junior (Letlamoreng) at Police XI, he is doing a marvellous job but we know he is not earning much. You will find that his assistant, Summer Ncube, gets a decent salary. We deserve more respect,” said the coach.
Gaborone United (GU) secretary Herbert Letsebe dismissed the notion that local coaches are not treated equally. He said when they look out for a coach, there are certain credentials they look for irrespective of the nationality of the coach. “At the same time we cannot appoint a coach because he is Motswana and deserves to be given a chance. If there is a Motswana coach who meets our requirements, we then appoint him. We’re running a club where stakeholders demand results and we need to have a coach who will deliver our expectations,” said Letsebe. He pointed out that some of the local coaches need to be serious and prove that they have what it takes to deliver.
Mochudi Centre Chiefs publicity manager Clifford Mogomotsi said some of the local coaches might have the qualifications but it does not necessarily mean they have the experience to lead big clubs like Chiefs. “We want a coach who will come here and earn the respect of our players. That coach must also deliver the results because we always want to challenge for honours. In the past we’ve given some local coaches a chance but they failed us. Some of them came here as assistants but they always have their own issues which is not good for the club,” said Mogomotsi.