Cup records speak: local is lekker

2012-12-09 10:00

Clinton Larsen’s victory over Johan Neeskens in the Telkom Knockout last weekend proved once again that local coaches seem to have an edge over their foreign counterparts in domestic Cup competitions.

PSL Cup records show Bloemfontein Celtic’s Larsen (41) has followed the path of 10 other successful home-grown mentors since the turn of the decade.

SuperSport United coach Gavin Hunt also triumphed over Mamelodi Sundowns’ former coach, Neeskens, this year.

Accomplished former club coach Ted Dumitru says such achievements should send a strong message to club owners about the capabilities of local coaches when given a chance.

Dumitru is of Romanian descent, but is now a naturalised South African.

“The likes of Larsen are more committed to development of South African football,” said the renowned technician, who has mentored many local coaches since his arrival in the country in the 1980s.

Paul Dolezar (four Cups) and Muhsin Ertugral’s (six) hegemony has been halted by the emergence of a sizeable exclusive club of local mentors who have claimed Cup victories as head coaches since 2000.

They are Clive Barker, Jomo Sono, Pitso Mosimane, Gordon Igesund, Roger de Sa, Craig Rosslee, Owen da Gama, Trott Moloto, Manqoba Mngqithi, Boebie Solomons and Farouk Khan. Solomons and Khan were joint coaches when Santos won the 2003 Absa Cup.

Sono has won three trophies in four finals with Jomo Cosmos, despite the club being relegated three times in the past five seasons.

Mosimane was a runner-up in four finals with SuperSport United before the Pretoria-based club captured the 2005 Absa and the 2004 SAA Supa8 Cups.

De Sa guided Bidvest Wits to three finals before he lifted the 2010 Nedbank Cup.

Mngqithi steered Golden Arrows to the 2009 MTN8 Cup, the club’s first major silverware in its history.

Said Mosimane: “Cup competition comes as a good incentive for some of our coaches as they are not paid as much as the foreign guys. I always want to do well because I love to compete in CAF (Confederation of African Football) competitions and the only way to get there is to win the Nedbank Cup.”

Mosimane featured four times in seven Cup contests – between 2003 and 2010 – that were all local-coach clashes.

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