Sunday, October 4, 2015

TFF: Mkwasa must make decision

THE Tanzania Football Federation (TFF) has directed stand in Taifa Stars coach, Charles Boniface Mkwasa, to make a decision on whether he will take a permanent job at the team or remain with his club Young Africans.

TFF appointed Mkwasa to temporarily take charge of the national team after parting ways with Dutch coach, Marj Nooij in July, this year. Nooij found the going tough losing 3-0 consecutively to Egypt in an Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifier and in the Chan 2016 falling to Ugandan Cranes at home by the same margin. Earlier in June, Taifa Stars were knocked out from the COSAFA Cup where they made a guest appearance losing all three matches.
After losing important games there were so many outcries and the TFF had to act in good faith by appointing Mkwasa to bolster the team. And it seems the federation has been impressed by the former international and wants him to take Stars’ job permanently.
However, Mkwasa’s appointment came when he was still an assistant coach at his club, Yanga, a job that he still holds on to. In managing Stars, Mkwasa is assisted by Hemed Morocco from Zanzibar, while Abdallah Kibaden is a technical advisor.
A source within the TFF said yesterday that Mkwasa has been given an ultimatum to make a decision because it will be difficult for him to continue working with two masters at a go.
“The federation has decided to direct Mkwasa to make a decision on either to remain with Yanga or take up the Stars’ job permanently. This decision will be communicated to him immediately,” the source said.
The source further said that the federation’s Executive Committee had already prepared a long term contract for Mkwasa but they failed to go ahead with the plan because he (Mkwasa) still has a valid contract with Yanga.
This latest move by TFF has come just few days after several football stakeholders questioned the legality of Mkwasa to continue clinging on to the two posts. They suggest that it raises conflict of interest.
Simba SC’s Information Officer, Haji Manara, is among those who complained and wrote to the TFF president, Jamal Malinzi. Manara questioned how Mkwasa will be in a position to deliver for the national team without attending to several league matches to assess players capability of playing for Taifa Stars, while at the same time his club -Yanga also want him on the bench in every league match.
Mkwasa, who is currently with the Taifa Stars squad preparing for the FIFA World Cup, Russia 2018 qualifier against Malawi on Wednesday, was not ready to comment, saying he has not received any official information from the TFF regarding his future with the team.
“I will make a decision after receiving official information from the federation. Currently I can not comment anything,” he said. However, sources close to Mkwasa said that the former Yanga and Taifa Stars player is ready to relinquish from Yanga job and take charge of Stars. Early this week, Mkwasa named unchanged squad for the crucial double header qualifier clash against Malawi.
Taifa Stars will host Malawi in the World Cup qualifier preliminary round first leg at the National Stadium in Dar es Salaam on Wednesday. The return leg is due four days later at the Kamuzu Stadium in Blantyre.
Ahead of the two-legged encounter, Mkwasa has opted to retain the same squad he picked for the 2017 African Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifying match against Nigeria played earlier this month, ending in a barren draw. It is a decision that will bode well with local football fans given his team produced a mesmerizing performance in their previous fixture against the Super Eagles of Nigeria, who were lucky to escape with a point.

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