Plum job for Davids as SA coaches suffer mixed fortunes

FADLU Davids during his days as assistant coach of Orlando Pirates. BackpagePix

FADLU Davids during his days as assistant coach of Orlando Pirates. BackpagePix

Published Jul 11, 2024


Herman Gibbs

THE silly season’s coaching merry-go-round has been in full swing and has thrown up contrasting fortunes for South African football coaches, locally and internationally.

The pick of the new appointments goes to the former Orlando Pirates assistant coach Fadlu Davids, who landed the plum job of head coach at Simba SC, the 22-time winners of the Tanzanian Premier League.

A few days ago, Davids received the good news that he obtained his Uefa Pro License, the highest coaching qualification in the world, through the Northern Irish Football Association. This qualifies him to coach anywhere in the world.

Davids acclaimed his delight on his X account: “I am incredibly humbled. Achieving my Uefa Pro License today is a dream come true for me.

“It has been a life-changing journey, starting in 2015 with my Uefa B licence, countless hours, long travels, and sleepless nights, culminating in my Uefa Pro graduation nine years later.

“I take this responsibility with great honour, and I am committed to improving the world of football through hard work and dedication to this magnificent game.

“This is just the beginning; the real work starts now.”

Davids’ biggest challenge this season will be to dethrone Tanzanian Premiership kings Young Africans SC, the 30-time champions, and to make headway in the CAF Confederation Cup.

Over the past few years, Davids worked as an assistant to German coach Josef Zinnbauer. The pair first met while Zinnbauer was at Pirates and after his departure, Davids joined him at Lokomotiv Moscow and later Raja CA.

The Zinnbauer-Davids team has completed a magical domestic season in Morocco, where their team Raja claimed the highly sought-after ‘Invincibles’ tag after finishing the season undefeated.

More glory was in store for the duo after Raja defeated Nasreddine Nabi’s AS FAR Rabat 2-1 in the Moroccan Throne Cup final.

Several South Africans have benefitted from Davids’ appointment. Former Pirates performance analyst Darian Wilken will be his assistant, while former Pirates shot-stopper Wayne Sandilands will join Davids as the club’s goalkeeping coach.

There will be two more South Africans on Davids’ support staff – Riedoh Berdien (fitness coach) and Mueez Kajee (performance analyst) – making for an all-SA backroom staff.

Meanwhile, after Mamelodi Sundowns parted ways with Rulani Mokwena, the coaching careers of Manqoba Mngqithi and Steve Komphela have taken an upward turn.

For the past 18 months, Mngqithi worked in the shadow of head coach Mokwena. He has now taken charge of the Brazilians squad ahead of the new season, and this is a dramatic change of fortunes for him.

Komphela left Sundowns for Moroka Swallows last season. He has been recalled and will work alongside Mngqithi.

It looks like they will be at the helm for a while until Sundowns decide on a new head coach, who will be given a mandate to guide the multiple SA champions to CAF Champions League glory, which was something Mokwena failed to do.

Sundowns have bolstered their coaching department by signing former SA Under-17 goalkeeper coach Shu-Aib Walters after the exit of Marcus Mashilo, who has joined Golden Arrows.

Walters will focus on coaching at youth and Gauteng Development League levels. He will work with Wendell Robinson, who heads the goalkeeping department Sundowns.

There is still no sign of Mokwena making a move, although several African clubs are known to be interested.

Further abroad, Benni McCarthy’s contract at Manchester United has expired and there are no indications of where he is heading next.

Bradley Carnell’s coaching stint ended abruptly at St Louis City in Major League Soccer in the US after he guided the club to promotion two seasons ago. He is hopeful of landing a coaching post in Germany.

Coaches like Pitso Mosimane, Roger de Sa, Dan Malesela and Cavin Johnson are still been waiting in the wings since recently joining the ranks of the unemployed.

Related Topics:

psldstv premiership