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New Bosso coach to choose assistants

by Lovemore Dube
25 Dec 2014 at 07:09hrs | Views

NEW Highlanders FC coach Bongani Mafu will have a role to play in the recruitment of his backroom staff, Bosso chairman, Peter Dube, has said.

Speaking at the unveiling ceremony of the coach in Bulawayo on Tuesday, Dube said the Bosso constitution was clear on the appointment of a head coach's assistants and while it was the prerogative of the executive to appoint the coach's assistants, the new coach would have a say.

Most clubs like Orlando Pirates have kept the likes of Tebogo Moloi for years and several coaches have worked with him as he is strategic in ensuring the club culture is retained.

Clubs have increasingly been fleeced by coaches with mercenary attitudes who employ their sidekicks for a cut in their earnings, leaving the club stranded when the entire coaching department is fired.

Some of the assistants' allegiances tend to be towards an individual not the club or game of football.

Dube, however, allayed fears that Mafu would have assistants thrown at him, saying they would work with the coach in that regard.

The move has opened the way for another round of jostling for the assistant coach and goalkeepers' trainer's jobs. Another post that has fallen vacant in the first and reserve team is that of team manager.

Until last week, Mark Mathe was the interim coach with Cosmas Zulu advising him.

Willard Khumalo was team manager and Peter Nkomo the goalkeepers' coach.

Following a near disastrous finish last season, the need for new brooms at Bosso arose with Highlanders advertising for a technical manager, a position which has since been filled by Mafu on a season's contract.

However, the club's sincerity in giving him a 12-month deal has been questioned with critics questioning why veteran administrators involved in the deal, club secretary Andrew Tapela and Ndumiso Gumede, the chief executive officer, opted for a lopsided deal which does not give the coach the latitude to assemble a team for the future.

Short contracts have often led to coaches hiring older players, most of them with a mercenary agenda.

Asked yesterday who his assistants would be, Mafu said he was still consulting and would get back to the executive once he had done a thorough search.

"All I want is to get started. Getting the right lieutenants is not an overnight job. I was engaged 24 hours ago and before my focus was on landing the job, now I can try to identify the personnel to work with.

"At the end it won't be Mafu but it would have to be people who share the same vision with the club and myself. When the right time comes, I'll submit my short list to the club for its consideration and I'll be professional with the whole exercise," Mafu said.

With few former Highlanders players having the right coaching credentials unlike Dynamos where its sons can coach the whole Premiership, Mafu's job could be easier.

He is under pressure though to play his cards carefully and come up with a former player to be part of his assistants. Mafu needs someone with a clue about the Highlanders culture and politics as plunging into the unknown could be a disaster at a time polarisation at the institution is at its peak.

So many of the club's former players have vested interests mostly to do with personal gain than advancing the Bosso cause.

Bekithemba Ndlovu, Amin Soma-Phiri, Dazzy Kapenya, Mandla Mpofu and Dumaza Dube are some of the former players who could be considered for roles at the club. Ndlovu, Mpofu and Dube hold Caf qualifications.

Dube, however, could be retained as juniors' coach as he has done well before, with his players expected to dominate the 2016 team at the end of a development cycle he has been working on.

He is among a few development coaches with comprehensive programmes that can be followed to the letter and reviewed against set targets that are tangible.

Ndlovu was a committed player who in his days gave all he could to the club and was Kelvin Kaindu's assistant until 2013.

He spent the whole season at Southern Region Division One side Elephant FC.

Mpofu, a former club junior player who left for Ziscosteel with the late Thamsanqa Thambo in 1994, holds a Caf A licence and has been exposed well at Kujatana, Railstars and Bantu Rovers and would certainly cherish working at Bosso.

He is contracted to Bantu Rovers.

Names of former manager Ernest Sibanda and Netsai Moyo have been mentioned for the post of manager.

Sibanda's name has also been thrown into the hat for the chairman's post in elections set for early next year in which Emmett Ndlovu has emerged as a leading candidate for the secretary's post.

Source - Chronicle