Of the four coaches shortlisted to take charge of the Flames I would go for Eddingtone Ng’onamo and Ernest Mtawali and whoever is the head coach does not matter.
I believe these two can blend so well — Ng’onamo is highly qualified, has vast experience having coached the Flames before with the Dane Kim Splidsboel as well as being engaged by Danish clubs several times while Ernest coached the Under-20 in the Africa Youth Championship and was the caretaker coach after the firing of Young Chimodzi.
Nsanzurwimo Ramadhan had a stint with the Flames in a three-man technical panel with Chimodzi and Yasin Osman and he also had a stint with South Africa clubs, but we should stick to our locals.
Former Big Bullets coach Gilbert Chirwa has been inactive for a long spell and he can be given a role in the team’s technical panel in some ways like talent scouting.
The Flames have a tough assignment ahead starting with the ongoing 2017 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) qualifiers in which they already lost 2-1 the first match against Zimbabwe. The other teams in the group are Swaziland and Guinea.
Only the group winners will qualify for the 2017Afcon finals and to do that the Flames needed to win all games. Chimodzi lost his job because of the way he handled the game against Zimbabwe and Ernest took over as caretaker to oversee the team against Uganda in the Independence Day Celebrations friendly match in which he won 1-0.
The Flames next date Swaziland on September 5. The Swazis tie on three points with Zimbabwe having done the almost impossible — beating Guinea away.
Having won against Uganda and having seen the team’s strengths and weaknesses, Ernest was probably planning for the next matches and I am quite sure he took into consideration the Flames’ next task, which is the World Cup qualifier against Tanzania in October.
With such a thoughtful man, I am quite sure Ng’onamo will find it easy to blend in because someone was already there thinking ahead.
Ahead of the interviews, Ng’onamo and Ernest should be thinking on how to prepare for the forthcoming games and present them meticulously and if anything they can lobby for each other.
We really need a good combination of coaches here because the task ahead is a tough one. Unless we beat Swaziland in September and Guinea beat Zimbabwe, then the Flames have a little chance because all four teams would then tie at three points.
Tanzania are by no means walkovers and I am quite sure they are celebrating that they have been pitted against the Flames. If we beat the Taifas, the next opponents are Algeria. Oops! not Algeria again, we must all be thinking but before we do that, we should first shrug off the Taifas.
I suggest that Fam should engage both Ng’onamo and Ernest and motivate them with good perks so that whoever will be the assistant shouldn’t feel aggrieved.
My advice to Eddie and Ernest is that they should work as one and never alienate from each other to build good morale amongst the valiant young players that we have.
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