Coach Ronny van Geneugden— frustrated by his Malawi’s Flames’ indifference to his coaching regime—will switch to more technical players in his selection for forthcoming assignments.
However, it is doubtful if the Belgian will find such technical players, who according to definition, must be able to buy themselves time and space, play in tight areas, improvise, have a strong touch, skill and imagination.
The Belgian observed the technical deficiencies when his charges exited the African Nations Championship after losing by 1-0 margins to Madagascar over two legs; the latest being last Saturday at Bingu National Stadium.
Van Geneugden Tuesday told Football Association of Malawi (Fam) website that he now wants “tactical players with special qualities”.
“For instance, we had about three to four good chances which we could have easily put away, but we failed to make them count,” the former Genk coach told www. fam.mw.
“So, I want to try and see more tactical players with specific qualities. In this regard, we will be watching at least two games per week starting this coming weekend and I will be engaging club and developmental coaches very often.”
The coach, 48, was at pains to single out stand-out players in Saturday’s match.
“It is difficult for me to say because you win and lose as a team. Nevertheless, I would say, defensively organisation was strong and I suppose the outstanding players must have been in the defence,” he explained.
Van Geneugden was handed a two-year contract to deliver the goods with the Flames in the short term and in the long haul, instil a distinct playing philosophy.
The Belgian will submit a report to Fam Youth and
Technical sub-Committee summing up the Flames’ displays in the last three games, including the friendly in Kenya.
“There is good stability. The attitude has been positive. I think in accordance with the game-plan, we played well in Kenya and Madagascar although we conceded a late goal.
“But honestly, I expected more in Saturday’s [return] match, but we didn’t play well. The attitude and performance during training was encouraging, but I noticed that they appeared to be under pressure in a game situation.
“The plan was to stick to possession and play a more passing game while being offensive, but [instead] we played a sort of kick-and-rush type.”
Flames Assistant Coach, Gerald Phiri Senior, told last Saturday’s Weekend Nation edition that van Geneugden has observed local players’ shortcomings.
“Ronny has been honest in his assessment of our football. He told me that the players in Malawi are technically and tactically not good enough. This is an area he wants to work on so that our players are sharp technically,” Phiri was quoted as saying.
Work is cut out for the Flames coaching panel as Malawi will, next month, kick-start the Afcon qualifying race by hosting Group B members, Comoros Islands, followed by matches against Cameroon and Morocco.
The Flames will also compete in the Cosafa Castle Cup scheduled for South Africa from June 25.
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