Rosslee lined up as next Ajax coach


Former Cape Town Spurs and Hellenic defender Craig Rosslee is set to be named the new coach of Ajax Cape Town.

Wilfred Mugeyi, who starred in the Ajax shirt a few years ago is expected to get the nod as Rosslee's assistant. David Nyati, another former professional, is earmarked to add further technical assistance to the brand new coaching team.

Ajax boss John Comitis was last night tight-lipped saying only that Rosslee, the club's head of youth development, was "in the mix".

The "mix" includes an array of experienced international mentors, among them Philippe Troussier formerly of Kaizer Chiefs and Bafana Bafana. Dutchmen Wim Suurbier, Henk Herder and Leen Looijen and Frenchman Pierre Lechantre were also considered as replacements following Muhsin Ertugral's decision to have another go at coaching Chiefs.

Comitis had previously hinted that Ajax could go the local route to align the Castle Premiership technical team with their highly successful development programme run almost entirely by local coaches.

"If we lose Muhsin we might want to go local as a commitment to help establish a core group of top South African born coaches," Comitis had said at the time.

Current youth coach Duncan Crowie, a genuine local hero, asked not to be considered due to work pressure.

Rosslee was ranked among the top defenders of his time but boasts no coaching experience in the top flight.

He had short uneventful stints in lower divisions but can claim fame in the hot seat for his excellent run to the last eight of the prestigious Absa Cup with the youthful Ajax reserve team before they narrowly lost to Silver Stars.

Rosslee also took charge of a number of overseas tours by the Ajax youth team on top of several visits to the Netherlands to learn more about the Ajax football philosophy so heavily touted by the Cape side's big brother Ajax Amsterdam.

He is said to be favoured for higher coaching honours by the management of the Dutch super club. That in itself puts Rosslee in the pole position for the Ajax hot seat for seldom would anyone be appointed as head coach of Ajax without the approval from "above".

The foreigners in the running might have the coaching mileage but as in the past might well have flunked the acid test - a thorough knowledge of local standards and playing conditions.

Ertugral was very adept and did wonders with his "chickens". Can the new men in power, themselves mere chickens in coaching terms, emulate the cup-winning feats of the fiery Turk?


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