By Asaph Mwebaze
A few years ago, I made a written submission as to why it was prudent to hire local coaches to handle youth national teams. I was ridiculed for thinking I and many of my compatriots were more than capable of handling the task.
Others took to facebook to call local coaches failures because it was fashionable to employ Europeans.
But what has happened in the last two years has made me feel like I am not losing my mind and that I am actually sane.
In my stay in the United States, I had the opportunity to work with some top youth coaches and instructors, notably I worked with coach Wade Barrette a former player of Houston Dynamos and the US national team and coach of the Houston Soccer Academy “Soccer Shots”.
He noted that the idea of hiring foreign coaches for national teams would make local coaches look inferior.
Wade said local coaches were not only brilliant, vibrant and always ready to perform, but also have the mentality and technical know-how to nurture players and understand the local lads. This was in the hindsight of many South American coaches being hired in the United states.
I said a few years ago, all that was needed was for the authority at FUFA to provide local coaches with a conducive environment and equip them with necessary tools to get the best out of them.
Fortunately this has been done and like magic, the U17 and U20 national teams under Ugandan coaches have all performed with excellency.
The tournaments of which the coaches have participated in have exposed them to the modern trends while in competition with the best on the continent
What makes us ‘local’ is the non-exposure to the modern techniques of the game through training and retraining and the exposure in international football competitions.
As local coaches we should be exposed to excellence, the treatment that is accorded to foreign coaches should be replicated to the local coaches. This is in terms of payment, allowances and the working environment.
I salute coach Byekwaso and his coaching staff and U17 coach Hamza Lutalo with his backroom cast.
Bravo Compantriates and keep the fire burning. Lastly my classmate and head of Youth Development at FUFA Bashir Mutyaba, well done is an understatement.
The author is a CAF B licensed coach he also holds a Bachelor’s of Commerce in Accounting and Finance degree and a Master of Arts in Public Administration.