The long standing decision to part ways with troubled Gaborone United head coach, Rahman Allen Gumbo has finally seen the light of the day and an announcement is set to be made before end of this month, WeekendSport can safely reveal.
Gumbo is believed will be heading back to his native country, Zimbabwe. It is believed that Moyagoleele are left with unanswered questions regarding the fractious relations with the coach they appointed roughly 1 and half years ago.
Gumbo who hung up when interviewed about this development has always been on a sticky wicket with GU, and the appointment of Serbian born coach Dragojlo as technical director was the beginning of the grand plan to douse him. Embattled former Extension Gunners coach Pio Paul‘s name is pencilled as the possible replacement of Gumbo.
The Zimbabwean gaffer began to fall out of favour as soon as his team crumbled out of the league race last season but his winning of the top 8 competition saved him from the chop-but it could only be for some time, it seems. GU refuses to make any official confirmation but the team‘s sources say “an announcement is on the way.”
Owing to this development, Dragojlo is expected to lead the team and his full involvement will now buy the Moyagoleele hierarchy time to identify an eighth coach in the last four years, with Gumbo‘s ghost being banished in the pit of history.
Gaborone United is said to have adopted a softer approach on the side of the man they hired two seasons ago, but were rather stunned by the developments of the club after giving Gumbo enough time to adapt to the team’s culture.
The strategy employed on him is the same grand plan applied when David Bright was fired. Gumbo was initially hired as the technical director of the club, but as soon as Bright exited Moyagoleele, he took the reins. Like Bright, the coach only managed to win the prestigious Mascom top 8 tournament.
However, while the relationship between GU owners and the coaches is always a key factor, Gumbo ‘s failed attempt of seeking assurances on granting him complete control on football matters, including transfer policy, is believed to have been his downfall.
But characteristically and as it is always the case with United, other officials downplay reports about Dragojlo is being prepared to take the baton from Gumbo.
While recent results had made Gumbo’s looming departure inevitable, with GU seventh in the league and 12 points behind pace setters Township Rollers, there is intense frustration among the hierarchy and on the part of the players which appears to play in the team's downfall.
The owners are said to be slowly monitoring the situation. Those present are to be warned in no uncertain terms to step up their efforts to rescue the current campaign. The recognition that the squad needs to be overhauled remains, with senior players, some of whom were resistant to the team’s attempts to reduce their involvement in the side, still expected to depart in the next transfer window.
With many being of the view that the state of football in Botswana has deteriorated significantly as it is no longer appealing to the business community, this was a good week for the football community. The Botswana Football Association (BFA) leadership under the stewardship of MacLean Letshwiti secured sponsorship for a combined value of P19. 3 million for the FA Cup competition and the First Division league – both South and North.
Some disgruntled Botswana Football League (BFL) shareholders are planning to petition the BFL board led by Gaborone United director and chief financier Nicolas Zackhem and his treasurer Jagdish Shah. Furthermore, they want to challenge the Botswana football Association (BFA) leadership over the deteriorating status of football in the country.
Botswana Football Association (BFA) is poised to benefit from FIFA’s forward development programme. The Association will receive over P80 million to be used during the course of the next four years, as the world football governing body is strengthens its commitment to building a stronger foundation and the growth of football.
The Forward 3.0 funds – to be accessed by all 54 CAF members for the next four years have seen an increase of USD 2 million compared to Forward 2.0 cycle and Forward 1.0 cycle when the programme was launched.
According to FIFA President Gianni Infantino, the third cycle of the programme will be launched this month and it will dedicate more financial resources than before to developing football nations as there is an overall increase of approximately 30% compared to Forward 2.0.
“It is vital that we are now strengthening our commitment to building a stronger foundation for the growth of football,” Infantino noted.
The 62 page report by FIFA-Forward-Development-Programme-Forward-3-0-regulations also reveals that for travel and equipment, each member association, subject to compliance with the regulations, will receive an additional USD 1 million to cover the cost of travel and accommodation for their national teams. It further states that the remaining funds may be used to cover the cost of travel and accommodation for domestic competitions organized by the member associations.
“A contribution of up to USD 200,000 for the four-year cycle (2023-2026) to cover the cost of any football equipment related to the training of players and organization of matches (e.g. full kits for the national teams, balls, mini goals, bibs, substitution boards and referees’ communication systems) for those member associations that are identified as needing the most assistance,” the report indicated.
FIFA President, Infantino and his team said the member association is identified as needing the most assistance, for the purpose of the contributions, where their annual revenues (excluding Forward Programme funds as well as funds from any other FIFA programme/ initiative) do not exceed USD 4 million as the figure shall be reflected in the latest annual statutory audit report submitted to the FIFA general secretariat within six months after the closing of the relevant financial year.
Nevertheless, the contributions for travel will be released in four equal installments of USD 250,000 each in January every year, whilst those for equipment will be released in four equal installments of USD 50,000 each in January every year provided that the member association has fulfilled the conditions.
For the specific projects – in the case of Botswana and Namibia – there is an ambition to host the AFCON 2027 and if the joint bid succeed, the two nations will need to build new stadium to meet the requirements of CAF as the Bid technical committee has alluded before; therefore the two associations could make an appeal for extra funds to FIFA.
The report further says where a member association uses funds allocated for specific projects to improve or build new football infrastructure for its direct benefit or for the benefit of another entity (e.g. regional associations or clubs), the member association shall also provide, as part of the supporting documents, the FIFA general secretariat with the relevant national land registry certificate or extract confirming that the member association or the other entity is the owner of the land or the agreements confirming the donation, transfer or other form of provision to, or use of land by the association.
When contacted for comment, local sports analyst, Jimmy George said; “Ours is more a lack of vision, than money to finance programs. Regrettably when you lack vision not even USD 8 million can bail you out. Its pity the funds might be used to pay for the past projects that have yielded very little success.”