Dar coaches ought to outshine foreign tacticians 

23May 2022
Nassir Nchimbi
The Guardian
Dar coaches ought to outshine foreign tacticians 

​​​​​​​IT has been 22 years now since a Tanzanian soccer coach guided an outfit to clinching the Premier League title in Mainland Tanzania.

Simba SC's assistant coach, Selemani Matola, is one of the domestic coaches serving an NBC Premier League outfit.

Every local soccer enthusiast would love to see the humiliation of domestic coaches come to an end.

The football followers would love to see the Mainland Premier League title won by a club that is led by a domestic coach, as the followers have not witnessed such a feat for 22 years.

Yes, this is the 22nd season since coach John Simkoko led Morogoro's Mtibwa Sugar to clinch the Mainland Premier League top honour and brought domination by Dar es Salaam's Simba SC and Yanga to an end.

Simkoko had also ended the dominance of foreign coaches because of his achievement.

Coach Simkoko won the title with Mtibwa Sugar twice in a row starting in the 1999 season and winning it again in 2000, becoming the first and last domestic coach to get his hands on the trophy to this day.

Since Simkoko did so for the last time, the trophy has passed into the hands of foreign coaches, most of whom are Europeans, with local coaches being assistants to the foreigners, what a shame!

Kenyan coach, the late James Siang'a succeeded Simkoko, helping Simba SC lift the Premier League title in the 2001 and 2003 seasons.

In the 2002 season, Siang’a was defeated by former Malawian professional, Jack Chamangwana, who coached Yanga.

Chamangwana later returned to Tanzania to steer Yanga to clinching the Premier League title for two consecutive seasons in 2005 and 2006. Chamangwana is currently deceased.

In 2004, Zambian coach Patrick Phiri led Simba SC to lift the Premier League title before doing so again in the 2009 season with a record of not losing a single game that season.

Although Twalib Hilal, former Tanzania's national side player that as well won fame with Simba SC, came to give his former club the crown in the 2007 season, it is difficult to count him as a native as he already had Oman citizenship. That means he came to Simba SC as an Oman.

After the Premier League format was transformed into a two-year merger season, Serbian coach Dusan Kondic won the trophy twice with Yanga in 2007/08 and 2008/09.

The foreign soccer tacticians' dominance continued as Ugandan Sam Timbe also stretched the record by helping Yanga clinch the top-flight top honour in the 2010/11 season.

Another Serbian coach, Milovan Cirkovic, had Simba lifting the Premier League title in the 2011/12 season.

Milovan, who had coached Simba SC twice, had the side winning the top honour with a bang after defeating Yanga 5-0 on a day which had the winners being presented with the top honour. It was great for the side's supporters!

Former Dutch senior national team star, Ernie Brandts, set the record for being the first coach from one of the European soccer powerhouses to help a side clinch a Premier League top honour in Tanzania.

The coach helped Yanga win the title in the 2012/13 season before Cameroonian coach Joseph Omog, who was sacked by Simba SC in the middle of the 2017/18 season, also set a new record.

Omog won the top-flight silverware with Azam FC in the 2013/14 season, having taken over a fast and gifted squad from English gaffer, Stewart Hall.

In the 2014/15 season, another Dutchman Hans Van Pluijm had Yanga lifting the top-flight top honour before defending it in the 2015/16 season.

In the 2016/17 season, Zambian tactician George Lwandamina helped Yanga lift the top-flight title, which happened to be the side's 27th crown, the third in a row with the gaffer having replaced  Pluijm.

For four consecutive seasons, foreign coaches have guided Simba SC to lifting the top-flight silverware convincingly.

It started with Frenchman Pierre Lechantre who outshone Yanga's Lwandamina that later parted ways with the side and paved the way for Congolese Mwinyi Zahera.

Azam FC's Romanian coach, Aristica Cioaba, however, failed to see to it the side clinches the top-flight's top honour in the 2017/18 top-flight title race.

After Lechantre's dismissal, the job was left to Belgian Patrick Aussems who had Simba lifting the 2018/19 top-flight title and, in 2019/20, Aussems' compatriot, Sven Vanderbroeck, won the trophy with Simba.

In 2020/21, Frenchman Didier Gomes steered Simba to lift the top honour.

In this season's top-flight, there is again a clear indication that a foreign coach will guide an outfit to lifting the Mainland Premier League title.

If Yanga's tactician Nasreddine Nabi will not do so, then Simba's gaffer, Pablo Franco, might do so.

Nasreddine is a Belgian of Tunisian descent, whereas Franco is a Spaniard, what are the local tacticians waiting for? We should wait for next season, but for now, it is just history!

Surely it is time for the local coaches to end the humiliation and regain their dignity in the Mainland Premier League.

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