Rolling Dirang gathers no moss

A rolling stone gathers no moss. Could this be true of Mochudi Centre Chiefs midfielder Dirang Moloi who every transfer window always seem to jump ship to try pastures anew. And because of his immense talent, which I think he has not managed to exploit to the fullest, he is never short of suitors.

I am therefore convinced that if it were not for the constant change of clubs almost every transfer season, Dirang would be an icon who probably could enter sport’s hall of fame.

But the lanky midfielder’s mercenary time of thinking has unnecessarily compromised his overall contribution to Botswana football.  He is not only a skillful player, but his vision when on the field of play and when in a good mood could mesmerise opponents leaving spectators to eat from his palms. I pray that while he is not getting younger he should stay focused and grounded at one club so that he can give spectators a last hooray.  The Zebras badly need a person of his immense talent, but up until he regains his old form and fitness level it could be a long way before he is recalled to the squad.

In admiration of his talent, Peter James Butler once selected him even though he was not attached to any club then.  Now the Zebras have progressed to the next round of the 2018 FIFA World Cup and will face Mali in November. Added to that his club will on Sunday lock horns with bitter rivals, Township Rollers in a game that could knock off Chiefs from the league title race.  Can Dirang, therefore, raise his hand both for club and inclusion into the national squad?

As spectators and supporters we want to have fond memories of him, but his constant changing of clubs means that there has not been any continuity in his game as almost every new season he starts from scratch to learn the philosophy and style of his new coach and players.

It has been argued before that he does not like the game, but I beg to differ as God has anointed him with this talent to provide ample entertainment. It is only that he has not been patient enough.  But can he regain his old spark and fitness? Only he knows.



Not long ago, I wrote on the pages of this column questioning the suitability of UEFA president, Michel Platini to be the next FIFA president.  That was before he was suspended for the $2million that he received from Joseph Sepp Blatter for some unspecified work.

The money apparently was not recorded and by the look of things he was being bought not to challenge Sepp Blatter, who was standing for the FIFA presidency. 

All that he and Blatter are saying is that it was a man-to-man agreement for some advisory work he carried out.  What is so curious is that he was paid almost five years later and it is not clear why the delay. Curiously, the likes of Luis Figo and Michael van Praag, who had wanted to challenge Blatter in the May election, are now quiet, bringing into sharp focus whether they were serious or were just being used.

The two men are all quiet and the English Football Association, which has been critical of FIFA simply because he did not support its bid for the 2018 and 2022 World Cup, is now left in a quandary.  The FA has been forced to suspend its support for Platini, but it is quite clear that Platini was being pushed for the FIFA presidency to serve the interests of the Lions and not necessarily those of world football.

As a result the European Football Association (UEFA) has been left with egg on its face.

The question now is who will lead FIFA come February 26, 2016. And while all fingers are being pointed at Blatter, all the soccer federation presidents from various countries are to blame.

I am convinced that all of these presidents have been exposed to bribery and chicanery that accompanies the bidding of this major event, but yet none has blown the whistle.

Instead, all of them have kept quiet and the end result - a cancerous situation - developed within FIFA. We, therefore, need brave and honest presidents who can blow the whistle for any attempted bribery. Hosting the World Cup should be based on fairness and not how much a bidding association can pay to would-be voters.  But the implication of Platini is a major blow for UEFA. 

The federation has lost its moral high ground.  But is there no one good enough in Africa or South America to take over?  This is a serious indictment to these continents for not grooming enough talent.  Africans and South Americans can be as good as anybody, however, our integrity is always questionable because we are deemed to be people with no ethics and principles.

This is the image Africa has to rid itself of to prove that a black man can successfully lead a white man. Equally cult personalities are not good for any game, though Blatter has done a lot for Africa.  The process of bidding for the right to host the World Cup ought to be looked at.

Editor's Comment
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