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Let the players drink - Butler

MQONDISI DUBE
Butler says players should be allowed to drink after a game
Former Zebras coach, Peter Butler has said players should be allowed to drink after the game.

Four Zebras players were recently caught drinking alcohol after the Malawi game, and new coach, Adel Amrouche has said he will not tolerate such a culture.

But Butler, who was in the country this week for the Independence Day clash between his new side, Liberia, and Zebras, warned Amrouche might fail if he adopts the iron fist approach.

“You cannot change the social culture of Botswana. This is where I think the new coach is going to have problems. You have to work with and around the drinking culture while you are educating the younger ones. It is a generational thing. It will take years of education,” Butler said.

“I learnt quickly and I gained the respect of the players and public. If you are stubborn and rigid, you have no chance of success.”

Butler said he was totally against alcohol in camp, but after the game “let the players relax and couple of beers is not

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going to harm anyone”.

“It is called a give and take approach. I am from a drinking culture and this is the approach in England. Ban alcohol and they do it behind your back. Allow them some leverage and you earn their respect.

“I used to take my technical team for drinks midweek. It was all controlled and sensible. Maybe that’s why we had such a healthy relationship,” Butler said.

During Butler’s reign, Zebras players were once pictured buying alcohol on their way to a national team camp in Francistown, which sparked uproar on social media.

Butler believes such a relationship with the players bodes well for the success of the team. But Amrouche was forthright in his interview with Mmegi Sport last week, where he indicated that he would never embrace the culture of drinking while on national duty. The Botswana Football Association has said action would be taken against the four players.



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