George Dearnaley

Some coaches deserve the boot

2008-09-05 03:44

George Dearnaley

Former Nigerian national coach, Austin Eguavoen, recently quit his position as coach of PSL team Black Leopards.

What makes the story newsworthy is that the man with international pedigree lasted only slightly longer than a full working week - just the one match ladies and gents. Now I know this sounds a bit harsh, but he got what he deserved.

In fact, anyone who signs up to be the coach of this team in the very near future, deserves to be fired, and not get paid. I mean, it would take someone with a small brain, who had been lost in space for the last few years, not to know that Black Leopards are arguably the worst team in the country when it comes to looking after their coaches.

Any coach who signs a contract with them and does not know what happened to the last 10 coaches, deserves everything he gets. I would suggest that the word goes out that no-one is prepared to take on the job of head coach at this team - that might send out a strong single to the team management (and the fans!)


There are, of course, those ubiquitous 'stand-in' coaches who come along for the last 10 games of a season, and who try their best to get the team out of relegation. Most fail, but it doesn't stop them from trying every season.

The scary thing is that none of them are ever offered a full-time coaching job at the start of a season - they only get offered the job when it is obvious to everyone on the planet, they have little chance of surviving.

Most times, the stand-in coach comes in and says "the team is not fit" and this seems to be enough reason why they will get relegated and why he can't be blamed for their failure. Pathetic.

Have Arsenal given up?

I would hate to argue that they have thrown in the towel when it comes to the Premiership title race, but I imagine that some of the young players are thinking it would be better to be European champions than local league champions.

I mean: Champions of the whole of Europe versus Champions of only England. It makes sense... in a way.

They deserved better against Chelsea, and who knows how it would have finished if 'sporting' John Terry hadn't kicked the ball back right into the corner flag after Arsenal had kicked it out on the halfway line while they were in attack. I think Chelsea scored the winner about 45 seconds after Arsenal threw it back in from the corner flag. Nice sportsmanship.

Tired legs

My opinion is that the way the English game is played, is vastly different to the way it is played in Europe, and to win both titles means playing two styles of football. I think Arsenal's style is better suited to Europe than to the hustle and bustle of England's Premiership - although they have done pretty well this season.

I fear that tired legs, a lack of depth in key positions and the distraction of European glory could mean the end of their league title hopes.

Liverpool could still win it, but I'm not sure what the message would be should a team that finished fourth (maybe fifth) in their own domestic league, have bragging rights over the whole of Europe.

  • George represented South Africa during the 1994 Soccer World Cup qualifiers and is Media24's group soccer manager.

  • Disclaimer: Sport24 encourages freedom of speech and the expression of diverse views. The views of columnists published on Sport24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Sport24.


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