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Nico players owed salaries for the whole season

Players of the relegated Nico United are owed salaries for the whole season, the club’s former Treasurer, Kgakgamatso broke the news recently at the club’s Annual General Assembly at Lekadiba Club. He said the club’s monthly wage bill stand at P80, 000 and that the club is currently sitting on a P700, 000 debt.


Moreri revealed that some players have since taken the legal route to force the club to pay them. He said that they have since appeared before court and the club has been ordered to pay outstanding salaries, a directive unlikely to be met in a short time and likely to attract subsequent penalties. Moreri noted that they have since paid over P25, 000 in rental arrears after the landlord approached the courts for redress. It appears if Nico’s financial trouble does not subsides, it is likely to be embattled with court appearances and lawsuits.


Nico’s expenditure stands at around P700, 000 in the just ended season, largely relying on the Premier League grants and donations from good Samaritans as well as gate takings. The club’s slightly over P600, 000 income made in the 2016/17 season was all consumed in the expenditure which exclude payment of salaries. Players were only paid “inadequate” bonuses way below their salaries in the months of October, December and January. Nico United’s expenditure include paying for housing and utilities for its players.


Moreri also noted that the club’s technical sponsorship deal with Pedigree Sport has come to end and pleaded with the team to look into issues of membership as the club has no registered and subscribing members since the closure of BCL. Nico made around P25, 000 in subscription fees from its members who worked at the mine. Nico has been falling in the premiership log-standing since 2013. The Phikwe based outfit were runners-up in the 2012/13 season and fell to position five the following season. It went on to drop to position nine, position 11 and 14 in the 2014/14, 2014/16, and 2016/17 respectively.


The General Assembly ended with the election of a new Executive Committee to run the club in the next four years as per the club’s constitution. Moagi Tshupego has been elected chairman with Ace Moloko and Okemetse Matebejane as his Vice Chairman Administration and Technical respectively. Busang Moalosi and Phinda Mbereki have retained the positions of Team Manager-Welfare and Team Manger-Logistics respectively. Bangulani Choolisa was elected Treasurer while Ace Orapeleng retained as Public Relations Officer.


 The position of Secretary went to Esther Ikaneng, assisted by Tshinyegelo Mogote while Supporters Chairperson was won by Mathiba Mothelo. Joseph Kelekwang was voted in as Kit Manager while Samuel Ponatshego and Kgakgamatso Moreri are additional members.
Meanwhile, renounced Sport Analyst, Vusa Ziga of Botswana Television advised Nico United to be united as they will now be playing at first division, warning that if the club fails to gain promotion to the BTC Premiership in two years, its chances of going back to the elite league will be very elusive.


“You have to come up with new strategies that will help to promote the team from first division. Nico is going to depend more supporters to run the club and if we do not get promotion in the next two years, we will follow on the footsteps of FC Satmos,” he said.
Ziga, who is BTV’s General Manager for Projects and a Nico United supporter is one of the club’s well-wishers who has helped Nico financially in the last season. On this day, he donated five soccer balls to show his continues support for the club.


The new committee’s first task is to meet former FIFA Development Officer, Ashfold Mamelodi to help them strategise and establish a working relationship with Real Movers, another Selebi Phikwe based team that will be playing alongside Nico in the Debswana First Division North. Mamelodi is said to have volunteered his mentorship skills to lend a helping hand to Nico United in order to see the club return to BTC Premiership.

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Sport

Dambe, Tsotso dump Zebras

12th April 2021

Remnant of the historic Africa Cup of Nations squad of 2012, Mogakolodi ‘Tsotso’ Ngele and Botswana’s first-choice goal keeper, Kabelo Dambe, will never embody the future of the Zebras as long as Adel Amrouche is at the helm, WeekendSport has established.

The duo made this confession in the squad secret WhatsApp group seen by this publication, expressing concern and antipathy about playing for the squad heavily polarised by the coach.

It turns out that the coach has players he favours and prefers, many of who appear in the starting line-up as a long lasting promise to be signed under his stable. The aim is to ultimately recruit them to far flung clubs and earn a commission.

Ngele who remains the only player to have scored the Zebras goal (in open play) at the 2012 edition has endured a rocky affair with the coach.

Not much has been established as to why the affair is in tatters but sources claim that it stretched to a point where Amrouche confronted Ngele’s former coaches at Black Leopards to discuss possible options of side-lining him. The idea was to frustrate the player and kill his confidence as the only player Zebras looked up to.

Ngele, under former coach Peter Butler, was named the squad captain but under Amrouche, he has played cameo roles in World Cup and AFCON qualifiers. Ngele has made three appearances and came once as a substitute in all the 10 games Amrouche managed.

Ngele was hoping for his own great leap forward in an effort to end his nightmare and play for the Zebras especially after earning playing time with his new club, Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila.

Do this day, Ngele has made more than 35 appearances for the Zebras since earning his debut in 2009. Away from The Zebras stage, Ngele made significant contributions at Platinum Stars, the first team he signed his professional contract with. In 67 games, he scored 19 times.

Amrouche’s insistency and promise to make a loud impact in this year’s qualifiers did not bear fruit. Part of the blame is shoved on Township Rollers stopper, Kabelo Dambe. He is accused to have failed to stand strong for Zebras and shipped in simpler goals that cost the team to book a flight to Cameroon next year.

A goal against Algeria on home soil and a goal by Zimbabwe last month could have never gone through had he positioned himself better, critics claim.

Dambe who has more than 44 caps and played all Zebras games under Amrouche feels hard done and had hoped the coach and the nation would protect him. He feels the ambition of the country to qualify mirrors a tomorrow that could never come because of his mistakes.

Botswana Football Association (BFA) General Manager of National Teams, Monnakgotla Mojaki when pressed for interview failed to provide details about the future of the two stars.

He expressed concern that he was never hands on when the squad played the qualifiers. This according to Mojaki, was the case because the coach had barred him from mingling with the players.

“I am sorry I cannot assist you with anything, I know nothing and remember I have not spoken to anybody since I was asked not to come to camp,” he shared.

Both Dambe and Ngele are not only equally unhappy but are also equal in age; both are 30 years and have played for Platinum Stars at one point in their careers.

However, there is information to the effect that the duo made a promise to return one day, and that is when the coach has parted company with the association.

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Sport

Galaxy star wants out

12th April 2021

Lebogang Ditsile has begun to cast fresh doubts over his future as a Jwaneng Galaxy player. The hard tackling midfielder has handed the club management a transfer request amid rumours linking him with Gaborone United.

This week, the industrious player gave Galaxy an ultimatum -to either improve his contract benefits or let him go- this comes after a decision was taken to offer the whole team pay cuts amid the corona virus pandemic.

Galaxy has arrived at a conclusion of giving each player P3000 until a time football returns to the field.Ditsile, one of the club’ highest paid players is certainly restless and would not want to entertain a second thought over his future.

Galaxy on the other hand is feeling distraught over GU’s constant communication with the player, and are also aggrieved that the Nikholas Zakhem powered team wants to prize away their asset. Ditsile’s contract does not expire until June of 2022.

The situation is not yet explosive but it is believed to have gotten under Ditsile’s skin and it is threatening to turn ugly. Ditsile apparently is the best thing ever to happen to Galaxy and to leave them at this point will surely be a great loss that could take some time for the club to recover.

However, GU is busy making their move for their long-time target and the enterprising midfielder is said to be determined to complete the transfer before the season begins. It is said the player wants to play football without hustles, which Galaxy cannot promise at the present moment, and the allure of GU will certainly prove too much to stay from.

The team led and directed by Zakhem is reported to have promised ‘Tally’ a mouth-watering contract should he voluntarily terminate. It is however noted that GU cannot risk buying the player who is still on a running contract.

It is believed that Ditsile recognises GU as one of the country’s leading clubs, capable of competing for the grandest prizes. In the event of joining GU, Ditsile would have fulfilled his dream of playing for a rich paying club.

He has enjoyed his years at Galaxy, where he is feted by the supporters, but feels that the time is right to move on. It is impossible to dispute the value and service that he has given to the club, with last season being his best.

The fan-favourite, who has had an on and off relationship with the national team, is still held by the terms of his contract while discussions between his agent are continuing behind closed doors.

Those close to developments mention that Ditsile is yet to be shocked by the stubborn position held by the Galaxy; but the club will surely hate losing such a prized possession to their fiercest rivals.

The Galaxy management has a reputation of being tough negotiators but for Ditsile, the offer from GU is one that should be impossible to refuse.On the other hand, GU are mindful of the tactics often displayed by Botswana players.

They have a tendency of bargaining through rival clubs so as to increase salary or force the management to act swiftly.

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Sport

Panic ahead of women champions’ league

12th April 2021

The absence of women national league in the country has caused anxiety and alarm at Botswana Football Association (BFA) secretariat. PIC: Soccer Laduma

This is the case because the inaugural COSAFA women champions’ league is about to kick start and BFA is expected to send the name of the team that will represent the country.

As things stand, the association is caught between a rock and a hard place because they are unable to determine the deserving team. The reality facing the association is because its women nation-wide league has never been played since the first corona virus case was registered in March of 2020.

However, the association has devised a plan and a model to opt for a team that will participate in the tournament to be held between November and December of this year. The play offs are expected to commence in August.

BFA has therefore called for an expression of interest from clubs to select the most deserving team.The expression of interest, according to BFA, should cover the club’s financial viability and ability to honour its games (both home and away) without fail. According to findings, the club will need a minimum of P100 00 to play a telling role.

It is therefore highly unlikely that BFA will find a women’s team enjoying such financial freedom. In any case, the association will be forced to offer financial assistance.Township Rollers, Mexican girls and Double Action are the few teams that can possibly be selected, but a huge question mark hangs over their financial disposition.

One other thing needed through the expression of interest is the current books of accounts which will definitely show that the club has been operating. BFA is of the view that this is important because it will help in showing the financial progression of the team.

“We are very pleased with how these events were organized under very difficult circumstances,” COSAFA General Secretary, Sue Destombes said in a statement.

“We take what we learnt in Nelson Mandela Bay into our planning for 2021. We have a full calendar of tournaments at this stage. We are hopeful we will be able to stage them all, even in these most challenging times.

The highlight must be the introduction of the regional Women’s Champions League, which will be a zonal qualifier for the new CAF Women’s Champions League which is coming later this year,” she further shared.

 

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