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Date: 23 April 2019

  Zimbabwean - Soccer

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Muhlauri to return as Warriors coach?

[Posted 08 Dec 2010]
[By Brighton Mupangavanhu]
Is Muhlauri destined to return as Zimbabwe coach? Only time will tell.

With the Zimbabwe senior national team, the Warriors' coaching job still lying vacant at the ZIFA House, speculation is rife in the city of Harare and beyond about the identity of the possible new coach.

The Zimbabwe Football Association is on record as having promised the nation that Saintfeit's replacement will be a local coach, with indications that the coach does not necessarily have to be currently residing in Zimbabwe.

Such statements from ZIFA have torched wild speculations, with many football analysts and Zimbabwean newspapers banding around names of their preferred candidates.

Charles Muhlauri and Rahman Gumbo appear to be popular names among journalists and soccer fans. Even predicted that the new coach could be a simple toss between Gumbo and Muhlauri.

Now it appears that the mother governing body ZIFA might have already set the ball rolling with respect to appointing a local coach.

NewsDay claims that Muhlauri has already been appraoched by ZIFA and has indicated willingess to return to Zimbabwe to renew his relationship with the Warriors. Muhlauri has previously led Zimbabwe to AFCON qualification, masterminidng a famous 2-1 victory over Ghana at the Egypt 2006 finals.

NewsDay quotes an anonymous ZIFA board member who claims that the board has already made contact with Muhlauri, who is now based in the USA, where he is doing some coaching. 

“We have already approached Mhlauri and he is willing to come back home. A good package is being worked out to lure him," the anonymous ZIFA board member was quoted by NewsDay as saying.

The anonymous board member highlighted an important factor for ZIFA to consider if they are to lure one of Zimbabwe's most successful coaches, Muhlauri. Luring him from his current base in the USA will need real political will on the part of national soccer body.

“The only problem is that he might not want to uproot his family from the United States. He will come here specifically for the job and see how it goes in case things go wrong. But the fact of the matter is that Zifa are putting a lot of effort to get him,” the NewsDay source added.

Should ZIFA decide to give Muhlauri his second dance with the Warriors, much will demand on the package that they will offer him.

Whether the next Warriors coach be Rahman Gumbo or Muhlauri, it will be unethical and unfair for ZIFA to offer them anything less than the US$8000 plus benefits which they offered to Muhlauri.

There is always a problem with African soccer federations when it comes to treatement of black African coaches and European coaches.

Africans associations are prepared to break the bank accoount to lure a European or foreign coach from elsewhere, even if the same coach comes and fails to deliver. African brothers have often been treated with disdain by their own associations.

Recently, Samson Siasia stalled on accepting the Super Eagles job offer because the Nigeria Football Association did not want to match the salary they offered to a previous coach from Europe, who flopped terribly anyway.

There are those among the fans who feel that recruiting Gumbo who is just across the border makes more financial sense than uprooting Muhlauri from the USA.

Gumbo's admirers further argue that the Botswana championship winner with Township Rollers last season, is better suited if ZIFA need immediate results, while they argue that Muhlauri is at best a  coach for development.

Whatever the argument is, pitting Gumbo against Muhlauri is talking about two of the best coaching minds Zimbabwe has ever produced, and they have results to prove their abilities.

At national team level, Muhlauri appears to have an edge over Gumbo.

The former Amazulu and CAPS United coach won the COSAFA trophy, and has also coached at the AFCON cup finals (in 2006). He had guided the team to the finals after finishing 3rd in a group which included good Nigerian and Angolan teams during that period.


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