Three FIFA dates, no Zebras in sight

No movement: The Zebras have remained inactive in the last three FIFA dates PIC: BFA.
No movement: The Zebras have remained inactive in the last three FIFA dates PIC: BFA.

The Zebras’ last match was on July 14, 2021, when they played to a 1-1 draw against Eswatini in a COSAFA Cup group match. It appears it was the last match for the year for a team without a substantive coach.

Just days before their departure to South Africa where the COSAFA Cup was played, coach Adel Amrouche left his post. The Belgian has not been replaced, with the Botswana Football Association (BFA) chief executive officer, Goabaone Taylor indicating the recruitment process will kick into full gear in the first quarter of 2022.

The post has been advertised with reported overwhelming interest from home and abroad. Letang ‘Rasta’ Kgengwenyane was the last man in charge of the team on an interim basis when they were knocked out in the group stages of the COSAFA Cup. While the search for the coach is on, the team remains on the sidelines.

The Zebras have missed three FIFA dates in the last three months. The latest date was last week, with the expectation that the Zebras will face Sierra Leone away in a friendly match. But Taylor said nothing came out of the proposed friendly match. “Yes indeed, the Zebras had been lined up for a friendly with Sierra Leone but that did not materialise. We are working on securing friendlies at the next FIFA window,” she said, without going into details. However, the next FIFA date comes in March, meaning the team is likely to be inactive for nearly a year.

The national side is not new to lengthy lay-offs, having gone for long periods during Peter Butler and Amrouche’s reigns without kicking a ball. Sources at Lekidi Centre said the national team was not an immediate priority due to financial constraints, but Taylor only said recruitment is due to be completed in the first quarter of next year.

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