Having followed Kenyan football for some time now, I strongly feel that there should be a balance between what the Technical Bench wants and what a club’s board wants in terms of player recruitment.
Balance here represents a working formula that allows the club and technical bench to recruit players they feel will help their teams achieve the set targets; this reached after financial considerations that won’t put their various brands into unnecessary debts and signings that won’t help the team.
We’ve seen cases where signings have been made by club officials without the coaches or the technical bench input. Coaches have used this as part of their defence when they fail to perform and rightly so. Its standard practice all over the world for a coach to work with players he feels will give the required results. When a coach feels that a group in his team is pulling in a different direction, chaos erupts and the result goes the other way.
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We’ve also seen scenarios where the technical bench has been given the free will when it comes to player recruitment; some, if not most, using this to abuse the privilege. A section of the technical bench with this liberty have used this as a money-making adventure where signed players are forced to part away with a section of the signing fee in exchange of a place in the team. Others going to the extent of sharing their monthly dues with people who secured them a place in the team.
There have been instances too where the technical bench (or the coach) or a club official, act as a player agent thus affecting who is fielded or not. This has never helped any team, and it won’t.
Reports indicate that Wazito FC technical bench led by Fred Ambani left because they were not happy with the recruitment process. There have been reports that players in the team were signed without the consent of Ambani and thus he felt he was being set for failure. Truth or not, there is no upright coach who would want to work with a group he feels are not in support of his ideas. It was the noble thing to do by Ambani if the reports are true.
Its time clubs worked in a professional way. Coaches are not puppets. If a team has to perform then the coach must be given a free hand in the recruitment exercise. When they employ people on a friendship basis, or to receive kickbacks, then the results will be the ultimate equalizer. When they fail to give results, walking them out of the door becomes an easier decision.
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The opinions expressed in this publication are those of the author. They do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of Pepeta.
(Image: Gor Mahia)