National Under-23 coach Daniel ‘Chicco’ Nare has accused football authorities of not helping his side enough ahead of a crucial 2012 Olympic Games qualifier against Egypt at Lobatse Sports Complex on Friday afternoon.
The Young Zebras, trailing 2-0 from the first leg played in Cairo a fortnight ago, host the North Africans in a game that kicks off at 3pm. They need at least three goals to sail through to the next round.
This week, the Young Zebras were only expected to have a full training session on Thursday because some of the players were due to feature in Premier League games for their clubs on Tuesday. Even Nare could not take the remaining players through their paces as he had to train his club BMC for their clash against Township Rollers.
“It is a frustrating time for me because I have to focus on BMC for the league game and then start preparing for Egypt on Wednesday. It is quite unfortunate that we’ve league games scheduled for tomorrow (Tuesday) while the Under-23s have a crucial game coming up,” he said on Monday morning.
“I believe that our authorities are not taking the Olympic team seriously or maybe our game is not important. If it was the senior team, there would be so much hype around it but I believe we deserve the same attention because we’re also representing the country.”
He complained that some of his key players risk having injuries in the league games and this might kill his chances of competing against the Egyptians. The North Africans were expected in the country yesterday for the clash.
Despite the problems he is encountering, Nare said that they will have to go all out on Friday afternoon.
The Young Zebras were lucky to leave Cairo having conceded two goals as they were under pressure for the most part of the game.┬á The opening goal showed lack of concentration by the local lads whilst goalkeeper Kabelo Dambe deserves blame for the second goal. ┬á
“We need to change our approach for Friday’s game. We have nothing to lose and should go all out to attack. We need to score an early goal to unsettle them and that would help us to achieve our mission,” he added.
In this the return leg, the Young Zebras are expected to welcome back Uniao Flamengo Santos’ deadly marksman Mogakolodi ‘Tsotso’ Ngele and left winger Kgololo Leteane from Extension Gunners.
┬áNgele missed the North African encounter because of school commitments while Leteane’s absence remains unexplained. Nare was happy to have the duo as he believes that their contribution can trouble the visitors.
“Tsotso has been in top form recently, scoring goals and that’s what we need to progress.┬á The problem is that we’ve been relying too much on Maswena (Lemogang) who is not even scoring goals for his club (Notwane),” said Nare. “As for Kgololo, I think his pace on the left can unsettle the visitors and he’s capable of scoring goals.” ┬á
Other key players for the Young Zebras include Bakang Moeng, Kenamile Mani, Kgaodi Odirile, Dambe and Galabgwe Moyana.
Botswana Football Association (BFA) president, David Fani, and Chief Executive Officer, Judge Mookodi, failed to provide answers why the mother-body is doing little to support the Olympic team ahead of this important game. Instead, Mookodi seemed to have no concerns about the scheduled league games and hinted that the Under-23 gaffer was aware of the league games. ┬á