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Chiefs resume transformation talks

Mochudi Center Chiefs

The Mochudi Centre Chiefs takeover campaign and the club’s possible return to the elite league has resurfaced once more after the newly appointed committee agreed to meet with relevant stakeholders who have the potential to re-boot negotiations from a new corner.

It is reported that the committee — led by business guru Edwin Mothulatshipi — has been given a new mandate to strengthen dialogues where the club will transform from a society to a football company.

The committeeꟷ which is believed to be closely related to the club’s founding membersꟷ officially raised their hand for the first time since last month’s elections, in an attempt to end a more than a decade spell of Chiefs ownership.

The committee is keen on pinning their hopes on reaching an agreement with both Matshidiso Kowa and Tsieng Ramotlhwa because of their status and good standing as former Chiefs administrators.

Moreover, Kowa and Ramotlhwa are appointed nominees of Mochudi Center Chiefs Pty Ltd, as per Companies and Intellectual Property Authority (CIPA) records. It is believed that the two and few others understand well the rich history of the club and can play a pivotal role on how and why Chiefs should be privatised.

The committee is urged to make significant steps so that the club can have an opportunity to develop their 7 hectare piece of land located on the outskirts of Mochudi. The club aspires to build a stadium and a shopping complex as the plan awaits approval and endorsement by Mochudi populace.

Former club Chairman, Thapelo Tsheole, who is also the Chief Executive Officer of Stock Exchange, appeared to have grown exasperated when he tried to transform the club. He was surprised when he tried to register a commercial footballing company on behalf of Mochudi Center Chiefs.

Reports say he deliberately chose the ‘Mochudi Centre Chiefs’ name because of its popularity as it remains a brand country wide. He found out that the company name already exists and is under the directorship of both Kowa and Ramotsha, something that sucked out his confidence.

This is the same company that had seven directors namely; Victor Kowa as the Executive Chairman, Ezekeil Mooki who was appointed the Technical Director, Serake Mfollwe holding the post of Director of Marketing and Public Relations, Simon Mmopi coming as Director of Development, MacLean Letshwiti holding the fort as Director of Finance, Sexton Kowa who was Youth Development Director and Kgafela Kgafela who occupied the post of Director of Legal Affairs and Board Secretary.

When approached for clarity, Olebile Sikwane who is the club’s Vice Chairman and doubling as the Public Relations Officer said it is high time the club traverses the transformation route. He said in fact it is their mandate to give the club to investors to make it a popular brand again.

“Yes we want to transform this beautiful brand; this club has a lot of assets. It needs people who share the same vision and values to take it forward…. And we want to do that,” Sikwane shared. Mochudi Centre Chiefs sporting club was first registered in July of 1974. The club was registered as a society under the Societies Act of Botswana as a football team.

It is noted that the club participated in the upper league of BFA under the terms prescribed in the constitution of the association together with the confinement of the Societies act. Information shows that there had been numerous attempts overtime to transform the club with a view to make it more commercially sustainable and to uplift its football performances.

However, such attempts threw the club into some disgruntlements, sabotage and sporadic achievements coupled with factionalism.

Sport

My dream is to coach at national level – Mpatane

28th June 2022
ELEVEN-ANGELS-HEAD-COACH: SEEMO-MPATANE

“I am a dreamer and perseverance is my name because after writing my Cambridge examinations a few years ago, I grouped young footballers in Francistown and started a youthful unregistered football team with them.

It was a difficult thing to do because the players were students and parents were not letting some of them to play football as they believed it might negatively affect their studies and some of the big clubs in the elite league will come and take my players.”

This is how Seemo ‘Sixteen’ Mpatane, a coach and founder of Eleven Angels football club which gained promotion to the elite league last weekend describe himself and the journey thus far. Barely two weeks ago, Mochudi Center chiefs failed to pluck Angels’ wings when they hosted them at Riverplate grounds during the first leg of the Botswana Football league promotional playoffs but this past Saturday Angels soared to a 5 – 0 win over them to reach the promised land.

The win meant Lekgamu la Bananyana (youthful side) as they affectionately known will now make a debut appearance at the apex of local league football. For a match characterized by a long stoppage time following clashes between Angels and Chiefs supporters, it was Angels who showed more battle to convincingly beat Chiefs and attain promotion.

Nevertheless, Mpatane said, “I continued to coach my team even when I was still studying at Botswana Accountancy College (BAC) in Francistown and it was a difficult journey because I had some school projects to do and I will divert my monthly allowance to some of my players; to feed them, provide transportation for them and also to buy them soccer boots,” he stated.

In 2013, he says, he decided to register the team officially with Botswana Football Association (BFA) in order to protect the players from other teams and to make income out of the team.
He further said Lekgamu La Bananyana started in Third Division league when they got position one and gained automatic promotion to Second Division league although it was only their first season to play there.

“We struggled at Second Division because I had inexperienced youthful players and had limited resources like transportation, soccer boots and most of our players were sitting for their examinations, but we managed to avoid relegation as we finished in position four,” he alluded.

In 2017/18 season, he said the team won the Second Division League and qualified for the Debswana First Division North playoffs. During the playoffs, the team represented Francistown region, against other three teams from other regions, to be precise Chobe United, Maun Terrors and White Diamond from Boteti region.

In addition, the young tactician managed to produce quality players like Norman Mabaya who plays for Orapa united, Doctor David and Fortunate Thulare of Jwaneng Galaxy and Molaodi Tlhalefang of Security Systems who went and made their caps at the senior national team.

“I achieved one of my dreams; that is to take my team to the elite league and I’m left with one that is coaching at national level and I think after getting my license I will be ready to lead under 17, 20, 23 and even the national team cause it just requires humility, love, perseverance and commitment, but right I can offer my services cause football is in the heart,” he said.

Mpatane revealed his intention is to see more of his players participating at national level and overseas, as this week Zebras interim coach Mogomotsi Mpote called the 18-year-old Monty Enosa to be part of Zebras team which will compete for COSAFA tournament that is set to kick off next month.

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Sport

GU chases services of two top players

28th June 2022
premier league players

According to reports, Botswana Football League champions, Gaborone United, are in the process of signing two seasoned players, Thabo Leinanyane and Mothusi Cooper, to strengthen their squad for next season and in anticipation of the CAF Champions League.

Sources say Cooper started training with the club after representing the country in the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier matches against Tunisia and Libya. It is also reported that Cooper had a problem with his Visa which prevented him from reporting back to the Moroccan club and joining his teammates in the Botola Pro League.

Cooper became the third player from the country to join the likes of Tumisang Orebonye and Kabelo Seakanayeng in the Botola Pro League after he joined MC Oujda. Since he joined Moroccan top flight league, Cooper has failed to regain his form. He was often used as a substitute in the dying minutes of the matches. According to his close friends, the current Orange FA Cup and league champions are in a position to sign him as he is expected to become a free agent next month.

When asked if the club would be interested in signing Cooper, the chief financier of the club, Nicholas Zackhem, said that they were not ruling out the possibility of signing the player. However, he noted that it would be difficult to sign Cooper due to his ambitious character.

He also noted that the club would be interested in signing Leinanyane, who is currently with Jwaneng Galaxy. However, he noted that the technical team would have to decide whether or not they want to sign the player. The club is also expected to sign other experienced players to strengthen its squad for next season as it prepares to participate in the upcoming Champions League.

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Sport

Rollers coach joins PSL side

21st June 2022
ROMAIN-FOLZ

DStv Premiership side Marumo Gallants has announced former Tiownship Rollers coach, Romain Folz as their head coach for the upcoming 2022/2023 season.

“Coach Folz comes with an extensive track record of leading teams abroad, and across Africa, including his previous role at Botswana-based Township Rollers F.C. The appointment comes following the expiration of outgoing coach Malesela’s contract,” said Gallants chairman Abram Sello

“‘We welcome Coach Romain Folz to the team, he brings an impressive and energetic approach to football that we believe will be a great fit for Marumo Gallants”. “Folz officially takes over the role of Gallant’s coach from the end of June 2022.”

For his part, Folz said “I am very happy and honoured to join Marumo Gallants F.C. and a league such as the PSL. My first words are for our fans. I can only tell them that all the efforts and work we will put in every single day is for them. We want to make them proud, and I will dedicate all my time and energy to reach that goal,’ said Folz.”

The 31 year old former Rollers coach becomes the second Frenchman to take charge of Gallants, following in the footsteps of current Cameroon national team assistant coach. Furthermore, it is not only in the neighbouring South Africa where Folz’s name is heard on the corridors as he has also emerged as one of the candidates for the Simba SC coaching job in Tanzania. Former Kaizer Chiefs coach Stuart Baxter has also been linked with the post.

“Township Rollers coach Romain Folz is one of the coaches in the running for the coaching job at Simba in Tanzania. He is assessing his options as there is a possibility of him also coming to the PSL next season. The coach’s South African-based representatives are talking to two PSL clubs,” said the source.

Meanwhile according to the reports, Folz is a nomadic coach who always walks away from teams. There were reports in Ghana before he joined Mapalastina in December indicating that he terminated his contract with Ashanti Gold just a month into his job after ‘disagreements with the top hierarchy of the club.’ Prior to Ashanti Gold job he coached another Ghanaian team Bechem Chelsea where he lasted for only six months.

Rollers club financier Jackdish Shah said if the young tactician gets a better offer somewhere, there is nothing wrong about it. He further said Folz’s contract with Popa expired at the end of the season and as a club they were yet to table an offer for him. “If there’s a better offer somewhere what’s wrong if he goes for it. We are talking of someone’s welfare here, our league has no sponsors. There are no gate-takings.”

“In some other leagues stadiums are always full, but here that’s a different case “So, we’ve always released players for greener pastures. Same applies to coach, if an offer is great we are happy for him,” Shah said. Nevertheless, amongst players who have found a lease life under Folz are youngsters Bame Morwalela and Phenyo Serameng.

“The young tactician also managed to bring back to form the likes of Motsholetsi Sikele and Segolame Boy who finished as the club top scorer, whom seem to be enjoying a new lease of life under the coach towards the end of the season.

Following the sacking of Hassan Oktay, a Turkish born gaffer, Bennett Mamelodi who is Township Rollers Chief Executive Officer (CEO) made a brave prediction saying “The name of the next coach at Rollers will shock a few people,” he declared.

A few days later, Rollers announced the arrival of a relatively unknown French tactician Romain Folz as the new man to take the reins at the blues who went on and signed a short contract which lapsed in May. ‘Little Ngwana,’ as Rollers supporters affectionately called him led Mapalastina to a second place finish in the league with 66 points after taking over in December. Folz’s impressive work didn’t go unnoticed, the 31 year one French tactician has joined South Africa’s Marumo Gallants.

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