NEW ZIMBABWE.COM SPORTS SAYS
Hands off Rahman Gumbo!
On the evidence of the state of Zimbabwean football and Rahman Gumbo’s continuing flirtation with the soccer national team as caretaker coach, one is led to believe that Franklin was definitely right.
Zimbabwe football reporters took Gumbo to hell and back after he accepted the coaching job following Sunday Marimo’s chicken-brained school–boy sulk over Zifa’s intention to replace him with a better and experienced coach.
Having resigned in protest, Marimo expected his deputy to follow suit.
But hang on, Gumbo is a 44-year-old family man and professional coach who is also a dad and has a family to feed. All coaches want to boost their CV from time to time if the opportunity presents itself.
The Dynamos fanatics at the Herald, still under the spell of Marimo’s excellent stewardship of Dynamos to the African Champions League finals in 1997, quickly labelled Gumbo a “modern day Judas Iscariot”.
And where did the Herald draw it’s authority from to draw comparisons between Gumbo and that terrible traitor Judas?
“Marimo’s friends at Raylton, the Harare sports club where the city’s sports personalities meet, believe Gumbo betrayed his former boss by accepting the offer from Zifa.”
They said it not us. Football decisions are now being made over a pint of beer, villains and heroes elected, coaches hired and fired!
After guiding the Warriors to a 1-1 away draw to Gabon in a Group 4 World Cup qualifier, Gumbo followed this up with last Sunday’s 1-1 draw with Algeria at the National Sports Stadium.
As the team was preparing for Sunday’s game, in came news that the Zifa chairman Rafiq Khan had been ousted in a boardroom coup.
Conveniently ignoring these developments and many others, the Marimo press continues to spew propaganda and question every decision Gumbo made during Sunday’s match.
He shouldn’t have replaced the inept Dickson Choto whose blunder gave away the first goal, they say. Instead, he should have pulled out Kaitano Tembo, they reason. No, not quite. Wait for it:
“Maybe either Kaitano Tembo or Dumisani Mpofu should have been substituted. Highlanders’ captain Bhekitemba (sic) Ndlovu had a nightmare game and so did Charles Yohane who was having his worst ever outing since he made the left wing position his own,” quote from the Herald.
So Gumbo should have substituted the whole defence for one player? What exactly is going on here, are people trying to have reasonable football debate or throwing cheap jibes at a man trying his best for a nation in crisis?
Gumbo is no Messiah! He never claimed that title.
Criticising him, if ever he deserves it, in isolation from the events at Zifa and the Premier Soccer League -- where that old enemy of progress Leslie Gwindi has gatecrashed his way back -- is preposterous and devious grandstanding by armchair critics.
For God’s sake Zimbabwe has been competing year-in-year-out since 1989 in the World Cup. On all occasions, our campaign has ended in tears. The coaches have come in all shapes and sizes – they all failed.
So what is wrong with giving Gumbo a chance? Zimbabwe are not out of it. They are just two points behind leaders Angola and can still pull through.
Why Rahman Gumbo,
a two-time championship winning coach with Highlanders, has made it
into the hate list of sports journalists is quite puzzling. As one of
our readers on the Forums once said, maybe Gumbo should stand down and
let Bigboy Mawiwi take over!
Results & Remaining Fixtures
Rwanda 3-1 Gabon
July 3: Nigeria v Algeria; Gabon v Angola; Rwanda v Zimbabwe
3: Algeria v Gabon
9: Gabon v Nigeria
Algeria v Rwanda
June 5: Zimbabwe v Gabon; Angola v Algeria; Rwanda v Nigeria
Algeria v Zimbabwe
2: Algeria v Nigeria
8: Nigeria v Zimbabwe; Gabon v Algeria
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