Friday, June 21, 2024

Of Chico, Magosi ploy and deceit

On Thursday, Mochudi Centre Chiefs announced it had ‘terminated the services’ of head coach Daniel Chico Nare with immediate effect.

The termination came in the backdrop of what the Chiefs management deemed a failure by the coach to meet his contractual obligations. Nare was hauled before a three-man disciplinary committee made of Centre Chiefs’ executive committee members a day earlier on Wednesday evening.

In a letter calling him for the hearing, the committee informed Nare that ‘your unsatisfactory performance and conduct is in contravention clauses 13.1 and 13.9 of your contractual obligations which constitutes to misconduct.’

Speaking to Sunday Standard, a source close to the matter said Nare’s fate was long sealed before the disciplinary hearing. The source said the charges levelled against the coach only pointed to one thing, ‘fired from work.’

The letter then goes on to warn the coach that failing ‘to account for poor performances through match reports to the team manager is a serious violation of the principle of accountability and transparency’ expected of him.

“Clause 13.1 of the contract stipulates that ‘the club may terminate the contract without notice if the employee is guilty of a gross misdemeanor with no obligations whatsoever.’ 13.9 on one hand pointed out that the club could terminate the contract ‘if the employee fails or refuses to follow directives of the club executive with respect to his services, provided such directives are in the best interest of the club.”

The source said given that the team looked for the gravest of charges, it was obvious that Nare’s head was on the block. The source believes the hearing was just to follow procedure and formalize the dismissal of the coach.

At the time of his firing, the former Morupule Wanderers and Extension Gunners’ coach had been at the helm for just three months. Hired at the end of December, his two year contract was expected to lapse on the 27th of December, 2024.

On the key performance expectations from the coach, the source revealed the bar was set too high. “His contractual obligation was to not to lose a single game of the remaining 15 league games at the time he was taking over. He had to win 14 matches and draw only one match. Given the caliber of teams he would be competing against in the First Division South and the resources they have, this was a task too high to achieve,” the source explained. Of further interest, clause 16.6 of the contract indicates the coach had ‘to win the 2022/23 FA Cup.’

Having signed the contract, Nare was already on the firing line the moment his team lost 0 -1 to Matebele in the league. What however turned things sour was Chiefs’ 1 – 2 loss to Union Flamengo Santos after the Matebele loss. The supporters bayed for his blood. Even winning an FA cup match against premier league outfit Holy Ghost a weekend later could not save him. He was suspended from his duties thereafter.

While this seems like a case of a coach failing to meet his obligations, a closer look reveals that things may have not been going right even before things fell apart. The source said Nare alleges he had complained about ‘things not being done right’ before his suspension.

He lamented that sabotage against him perpetuated by his assistant coach in collaboration with the executive committee had made things difficult. He pointed out to the executive committee that they were colluding to oust him.

According to the source, Nare explicitly told the team chairman that he was hiding behind the finger if they said he was the problem. He pointed out that the team manager never wanted him nor welcomed him to the club.

“Nare told the chairman he had complained to him about the team manager’s attitude and he never addressed such. One of his gripes was that the team manager never attended even a single training session. Above that, he alleged the team manager never communicated anything to him but chose to relay anything to the assistant coach who he says met with the manager time and again,” the source explained.

He decried that nothing was ever done on time more especially on match days. He cited the match against Black Forest where he explained the kit came very late and the team had to start the game having not warmed up properly. Another contentious issue in the acrimony, it seems, was the issue of ‘special projects.’ Chiefs is alleged to have failed to pay in full for ‘special projects,’ something which brought discord within the team’s operations.

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