IN SEARCH OF OUR NEW COACH? IN SEARCH OF OUR NEW
Kojo Addae Mensah
Posted on: Sat Jun 02, 2012
The season has finally come to an end and Kotoko have been crowned Champions for the year. I managed to just make it to Kumasi to witness history as Kotoko re-established itself as the most successful club in Ghana. No wonder CAF recognizes us as the club of the century. We can also cement that position if we re-enter Africa and become the fearsome power house that we have always been and reclaim our lost glory.
Of course it will take a lot of hard work and determination to do that and there is a lot of work to be done between now and next year when the CAF season begins. Like I said maybe it was a blessing that we were kicked out of this year's FA Cup because there is a lot going on now in Kotoko that requires time and concentration and so maybe the distraction of the FA Cup was not needed right now.
There is so much pre season planning required in terms of finances, logistics, administration and coaching, all in preparation for the next season where we need to ensure that we successfully defend our title. The likes of Ashgold, Hearts and Berekum Chelsea are not going to make it easy for us at all so I anticipate an even more competitive league next season.
Of all the areas where Kotoko needs to prepare most is the coaching area where it has now become clear that Coach Max has opted to go and assist his pal Kwasi Appiah in the senior national team. I am happy for Max as he progresses in his career but I am very disappointed to see him go. I think Kotoko is a very huge club and one that can reclaim its position in Africa on a very big platform that will propel any coach to dizzy heights but I guess the lure and glamour of the Cup of Nations in South Africa and the World Cup in Brazil is too much to resist.
So personally I think Kotoko is too big to have a part time coach so I will rather recommend that we give Coach Max our full blessing and permanently depart with him as head coach but keep him in the background to offer some technical assistance as he goes round the league centers monitoring players and looking out for the best. He will surely have some good ideas that he can share with us and make us improve even further.
So in my opinion the search for a new Kotoko head coach should begin in earnest. As I keep saying I am not part of management and so at the moment I am not fully aware of what plans they have but I am keen to share my opinions at this stage.
Actually it is only when Coach Max left that I realized that in Ghana, we probably are on our way to a shortage of top class coaches though I am aware there are a lot of up and coming coaches who are studying very hard at Prampram and will break through at one point in time or the other. But the problem remains and the fact remains that in Ghana now, we are scratching our heads and wondering who is next in line for the Kotoko top job in the technical department.
Names have come up and some of the names are quite interesting but maybe I should pencil down a few. Karim Zito, Coach Bash, David Duncan, Henry Wellington and Michael Osei (not emba) are all names that have come up strongly. So clearly Coach Sarfo Castro will not be cut to step into his boss's shoes anytime soon. All the names I have mentioned have their own pedigree and I think are capable of handling the team but so for you, who will be most suited?
Of course in the few interviews I have conducted, Coach Bash seems to appeal a lot to the fans who acknowledge the work he did in building that winsome side that swept the league with cheeky ease in the days of Samuel Inkoom, Harrison Afful, Eric Bekoe, Mark Sekyere and Co. However I think what is going against Bash right now may be the way he lambasted Kotoko on his way out. I tell you never burn your bridges, you never know when you will need to cross it again. I think that was a mistake.
Coach Duncan we all know is the no nonsense type and a strict man of his own word. he is a coach I like and I think can handle the Kotoko job on the field but football is not only about on the field of play and there are a lot of off the field issues that impact the game and that is where I think Duncan will fall short. He is known to speak his mind and does not hesitate at all to do that.
At Kotoko fans will come to your training sessions as if it is a full match and hurl insults and provocations at you. I think that is where Duncan will lose it and then start getting problems with the fans, especially when the media picks it up. That is where the issues will start affecting the players on the field. So though I have no doubt in my mind that Duncan can do the job on the field, the off the field may be an issue.
Michael Osei is young and upcoming and has done quite a good job at New Edubiase but I am wondering if he is ready to step into the huge shoes of Kotoko. There is no doubt that he has the acceptance of the fans and players and he has the right temperament to handle the stress and the issues that will come but does he have the experience? That is the multimillion dollar question. I think Michael will be able to do the job one day and maybe the management should bring him on as assistant coach just as Coach Max was originally brought and groomed for the future.
Henry Wellington, the brain behind the junior team has done a fantastic job so far and should be able to do the job but the little I know of Wellington is that he is great at identifying talent and moulding them into great players but I have not personally seen him in full action at the senior level however I think he has a chance.
Finally Abdul Karim Zito, our darling boy who was on his way to win the league some seasons ago and unfortunately got attacked. After a short stint with Hearts, we have not really seen the man in action but I hear he was at Feyenoord helping with the coaching staff there. Zito is obviously capable of handling Kotoko but the big issue is his temperament.
Zito has been known to have a short fuse and this may affect his relationship with the boys but who knows, probably age has softened him up a bit and he has now matured a bit more to handle the boys better with the off the field issues. He looks to be the front runner for the top job and though I don't doubt his technical capability, I am quite worried about his temperament and how he will handle annoying situations because the boys can be very naughty, playing pranks, truancy and what have you.
So the search is on and we are all waiting with bated breath as to who will be next but we have a lot of work to do and so it is important that we sort this issue out as soon as possible and get on with the job at hand. Once again I am really disappointed to see Coach Max go but hey who knows the future.
At Liverpool too Brendan Rogers seems to have received the nod to be the next coach. I have said that I will not comment further on the Liverpool coaching situation and will just watch from the sidelines passively. It is unbelievable that Liverpool of all clubs are struggling for a top class coach and settling on Brendan Rogers! I remain your true red fabulous aficionado. Kotoko Beku Me.
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