By Muambo Edward
Football Writer, Cameroon
The Botswana Football Association (BFA) has appointed Belgian coach Adel Amrouche as the new coach of the Zebras on a three-year contract.
The Belgian replaces local coach David Bright who was shown the door in February. He will be assisted by Mogomotsi Mpote who has been caretaker coach since Bright’s dismissal.
Amrouche beat more than 40 other candidates from around the world to secure the job. He is a holder of a UEFA Pro License and his last coaching job was with Algerian giants Mouloudia of Alger.
Amrouche’s main targets are to qualify the Zebras for the 2021 AFCON and to win next year’s edition of the regional Cosafa Cup.
The 51 year Belgian coach who was unveiled on Tuesday knows the weight of the task that awaits him.
“This is a challenge. I saw the [Zebras] team play many times. Botswana has talents but there is naivety in the football,” the Belgian said.
“The play is good, but if you want to reach the highest level, we must change our attitude, how to think and how to develop.
“I have done my research about Botswana football. I assure you, I will do the best I can do to take the team higher.
“I did not look at the (FIFA) rankings or your budget, I saw only what you can do with the team. This is a challenge.”
Another target for the former national team coach of Kenya, Burundi and Libya will be to do well in the qualifiers for the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar. His first assignment in his new job will be a preliminary round game in the qualifiers for the 2022 FIFA World Cup against Malawi on September 7, 2019 on home soil.
According to BFA President, Maclean Letshwiti, Amrouche’s appointment should also lead to more and more Botswana players moving into European leagues instead of the usual South African leagues which have been the regular route for Botswana’s football exports.
“We must start exporting to Europe. My market is not South Africa,” Letshwiti emphasized.
“I want to see our players in Europe not South Africa. However, bringing in a world class coach, does not mean we will see immediate results.”
The President is hopeful but knows it’s a work in progress that requires time.
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