Daniel Nare is the man credited with reviving the falling fortunes of the once mighty Extension Gunners.
For the past three years, Gunners have never finished below the bottom eight mark of the Premier League but prior to that it was a sad story. Gunners battled relegation for more than ten years and normally survived in the last matches.
Currently, almost every Gunners supporter is ululating for the man who also makes a fraction of local coaches in the Premier League.
However, despite Nare’s heroics at Gunners, he is now facing an even bigger challenge at the national team.
He is the head coach of the national Under 23 and he has just got into bigger boots left by Major David Bright, who is now in South Africa.
Bright put Botswana on the World map with the Under 23 and Batswana would be looking forward to Nare to do even better.
Bright shocked Africa and some parts of the world. He helped Botswana to qualify for the group stages of the 2008 Olympics that were held in China. It was for the first time in the history of Botswana football to qualify for the Olympic group stages.
Botswana also proved that they were not in the group by a fluke as they rocked it despite eventually failing to qualify.
En-route to the group stages, Botswana had to sweat it out with African giants, Tunisia. Botswana started with a valuable draw away and wrapped it at home with a solitary goal victory, courtesy of Moemedi ‘Jomo’ Moatlhaping.
In the group, it was also tough as other African giants like Cameroon, Morocco and Guinea accompanied Botswana.
Bright however always showed confidence as the team managed to beat the likes of Morocco and Guinea at home.
The team also ended up being invited to play in friendly tournaments in the neighbouring county of South Africa and even China, where soccer powerhouses were invited.
Bright was still unfazed as he kept on triumphing. Several players that Bright used at the Under 23 are now the cream of the senior national team that is also taking Africa by storm in the on-going qualifications of the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations.
Some of those players are Phenyo Mongala, Jerome Ramatlhakwane, Mosimanegape Ramoshibidu, Mmusa Ohilwe and Noah Maposa.
Nare’s first test was against Namibia yesterday (Saturday) at the new Lobatse Stadium.
Nare told Sunday Standard that his team can go places provided he is given all the necessary support.
“Definitely we would not go wrong if we play many friendly matches before our official ones. It was unfortunate that we did not get an international friendly before yesterday’s match but, in future if we have friendlies we will go places,” he said.
Nare also added that he still has a few challenges regarding the team he wants. He said he does not have problems in the goalkeeping and defence departments but in the midfield and the striking force.
“All my players are in the Premier League and for that matter playing regularly. Also most of them have vast international experience, which is very important. The major problem I have in the midfield is that our main man, Ofentse Nato, is also playing for the senior national team. The question is whether he can, in the meantime, be allowed to play for us or just for the national team because I understand his team, Gaborone United, have also lodged a complaint with the Botswana Football Association. Up-front, I have a thin squad because our two main strikers, Mogakolodi Ngele and Aubrey Kebonnetse, are not there. I am now left with Hendrick Moyo and Maswena. That is not enough because they are not yet proven goal scorers,” he said.