FAZ incompetent, says Chipungu

IT does not matter whether local or expatriate coaches we engage, Zambia’s football performance will still hang on a thread until the current FAZ administration is changed, says former Sports minister Kenneth Chipungu.

Chipungu told the Daily Nation yesterday that the problem of poor performance by national teams was not because of Zambia engaging local coaches but the low quality FAZ administration.

He said the executive committee lacks competence and this has affected the entire sport.

“It doesn’t matter what type of coach we engage; changing coaches is not the solution. I believe the current executive needs to be changed because it is not competent. I worked with the current executive committee during my tenure and understand well how it works.   ‘’I cannot dispute the fact that Kalusha Bwalya remains among the best players Zambia has had and sacrificed a lot. But administration wise, I feel he is not as good as on the pitch,” he said. He said the current executive had done its part and the former minister hoped another crop of administrators with new ideas would take over.

“We need a change of administrators to bring life to the game because if we continue with the same administration, I don’t foresee any change and we will keep pointing fingers at coaches,” he said.

Meanwhile, Chipungu has backed the call by the Ministry of Sport for FAZ to permanently   engage George ‘Chicken ’Lwandamina as national team coach.

He said it would be unthinkable for Government to engage an expatriate coach and pay him US$25,000 (K250,000) monthly salary when the country was facing so many economic challenges.

And the soccer fan body has also called on FAZ to quickly give Lwandamina a contract so that he can implement his strategic plan.  Zambia Soccer Fans Association (ZSFA) chairperson Peter Makembo said recently they were happy that Government was for the idea of recruiting a local as national team coach.

“We can’t keep hiring and firing. Let FAZ quickly give Lwandamina the contract. Zambia beat Kenya, a team coached by an expatriate. The only thing that the national team technical bench needs is reinforcement,” he said. He also hailed Government for approving the hosting of the 2017 Under-20 Youth African Championships because it would improve the standard of soccer in Zambia.