Home » Sports » Jongwe Isn’t the Right Choice [opinion]

THE recent events at Zifa over the past week or so were refreshing, and surprising, at the same time.

Refreshing, in the sense that Ian Gorowa was made substantive national team coach until 2015 and he is going to choose his technical team.

I believe no one is going to be imposed on him maybe except the under 23 coach who automatically becomes one of the assistants.

What surprised me are the reports and the cloud hanging over the Zifa technical director.

Reports indicate that Maxwell Takaendesa Jongwe got the post.

Zifa hasn’t confirmed this but his presence at some refresher course, and that tag which described him as the technical director, speak volume.

I am not against Jongwe being the technical director but I am surprised that this is the same guy who was removed from the Mighty Warriors for having the same qualifications as the coach thereby offering nothing more to the team than the coach.

Now, how does he become the national technical director?

Truly, “the stone which the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone.”

That got me thinking about the coaches we have in the Premier Soccer League.

There is something that stands out for all of them except maybe one or two — they are rejects of one or more teams.

I have written articles saying Zifa and the players are not doing enough to improve the quality of our game.

However, when I realised the extent that we are recycling the coaches, I began to question the effect this has had on the quality of our game.

These are the guys who have to impart football knowledge to our players.

Regrettably, many a times they would have “failed” at least once.

I know it happens the world over that a coach who had been fired is hired somewhere else but the big question is how has it affected our game here?

I would like to pick one or two of the coaches and analyse the effect their movements has had on our game.

One guy who has travelled quite extensively is Luke Masomere — the so-called Doctor of Football.

He has been to every part of this country spreading his football “medicine”.

The question is, has his gospel had a positive or negative effect on the quality of our game?

I have looked at how his teams play. It has been the same way since he arrived on our football scene.

I would be forgiven if I was to say it would be the same way for the next ten or more years.

In short, he has done much to improve our game.

I am sorry that I have picked him as an example, but it is the same story with the other 13.

It goes without saying that their job requires constant updating because football is evolving at a fast pace these days.

It requires them to read books and articles on internet and newspapers, watch satellite television to learn new tactics being employed by established coaches in other countries.

The question is — do they ever do that?

Or they throw away their books the day they finish their coaching clinics?

It takes commitment, dedication, and practical intelligence to be a great coach.

My take is what’s lacking is practical intelligence, that ability to take what you have learnt and improvise to make it fit and work for you considering the resources you have.

Take a look at most of the teams andor coaches.

They have been using the same formation for years, game in game out. Same approach to different situations? It doesn’t work.

I guess their training drills have been the same as well.

It’s sad that most of the time these coaches are associated with either a “n’anga” or “mupositori”.


Do these things work?

If they do then there will be no need for training.

The coaches wouldn’t need to go for coaching courses.

These “n’angas” and “mapositori” would have their relatives as coaches.

Guys wake up and smell the coffee.

I was talking to Hope Chizuzu one day and he told me that not even one of our coaches is eligible to coach even Under-10s in Europe.

I thought he was exaggeration until I looked at the requirements needed for Under-10 coaches in Europe.

True to his word, no-one among our top coaches fits.

Is our coaching curriculum wrong? That’s why the choice of the next Zifa Technical Director is of paramount importance.

The curriculum needs to be revamped.

One aspect European League coaches emphasise on is man-management. I have realised this is one area our coaches lack. They don’t talk to their players.

They even think that if a player questions them it’s tantamount to belittling them.

They treat players as their kids that they just give orders not realising that these are grown-ups with more than half of them being heads of their families.

You treat them with respect and they play for you wholeheartedly.

Sometimes if you listen to what the players would be saying you will learn one thing or two.

I have also come to question the role of the coach’s assistants.

I have noticed that most are the head coach’s loyalists.

Is it the way it is supposed to be?

Or you need someone who compliments you not a sheep that follows blindly?

Look at Dortmund’s Klopp. His assistant, Zeljko Buvac, is the one who is credited as the strategist.”

Zeljko is the embodiment of all things in football and a master of every form of training,” is Klopp’s description of his assistant.

I want to urge our coaches to choose assistants who add value not just cone distributors.

In the meantime, let me relax and watch the technical director circus unfold at Zifa.

Nothing new though.

The author is a banker and former Premiership footballer.

Source : The Herald