Amid a deafening silence over Peter Butler’s contract lockdown with the Botswana Football Association (BFA), reports have emerged that the Briton born mentor has shown interest in joining the Rwanda national football team as their head coach.
Butler’s name appears in a list of world –wide national team coaches who have also shown interest in the plum seat. Among other applicants is a former Burkina Faso head coach, Paul Put of Belgian origin. Put has driven Burkina Faso, an emerging African football power house to the 2013 AFCON finals. The name of Rodolph Zapata is also in the list. Zapata is currently employed by Gaborone United (GU) and his short stay with the club might be crushing to an unexpected end.
Previously, the senior national team coach was linked with Burkina Faso, but the upward trajectory of the team, now led by Paulo Jorge Rebelo Duarte, saw Butler’s hopes disappearing by the furthest horizon. Tanzania is one other national team that was once reported to be linked with Butler.
Butler‘s contract with the association does not expire until the end of February 2017. He penned a three year deal after an intense recruitment period in which he competed shoulder-to shoulder with Milutin Sredojevic, now spearheading Uganda national team. Butler, although being a smart coach by his own league, has fallen out of favor with BFA late last year. The association that was led by former President, Tebogo Sebego was often times accused of failing to tame the Zebras head coach.
At the close of last year, the coach said the BFA owed him an excess of P300,000 which included his gratuity and a cost of living adjustment. However, BFA has reportedly paid him the gratuity but the two have been deadlocked on the issue of cost of living adjustment and match bonuses which included reaching the finals of COSAFA held in Namibia in June 2016.
Since the beginning of this year, the two are said to be negotiating contract extension. A key factor in the thinking capacity of the NEC of whether to face public or even media back lash is anticipated to play a pivotal role in approaching the often controversial national coach, particularly that he is still furious about the manner in which his case is handled. But in whatever way, it is said the local football body is ready and prepared for hostile response from some quarters.
Finances and accommodative environment will certainly play a pivotal role in the thinking mind of Butler should he opt to leave the country. He is known to be a tough nosed negotiator who carefully forced BFA to offer him a salary of P 85 000 per month- P70 000 as basic salary, P14 000 as housing allowance while the remaining P1000 was for cell phone allowance. Efforts to solicit a comment from the Brighton were unsuccessful as has said on record he will not be interviewed by this publication.
BFA mouth piece, Tumo Mpatane said, ‘‘the issue of Zebras head coach is an internal matter and cannot be shared with other parties.’’
Athletics is one of the sporting activities that for many years has been consistently performing extremely well in international competitions. One of the reasons is the availability of qualified and experienced coaches, who have been working tirelessly on the ground to ensure that they scout talent and develop more athletes.
For the first time after eons, football clubs plying their trade in the elite league are walking in the shadow of the undefined with nothing concrete agreed and on sight before the commencement of the football season.