Ngubane says local coaches are ignored

SIDELINED Coach Mlungisi Ngubane
SIDELINED Coach Mlungisi Ngubane

Mlungisi “Professor” Ngubane says he can coach Orlando Pirates and Kaizer Chiefs – but he has not been offered a job in even their reserve sides.

Speaking to City Press this week, Ngubane expressed his wish to coach in the elite league, but said talented local coaches are not taken seriously.

“I can coach any team in the PSL,” said the 62-year-old. “But no one wants to give me a chance; maybe they are punishing me – not knowing they are punishing themselves – because I don’t own a club.”

Ngubane, who has coached in neighbouring countries including Namibia and Swaziland, said he could help struggling Maritzburg United and Free State Stars.

“I can help Maritzburg or Free State Stars, but I cannot compromise myself by allowing management to interfere.”

Although Ea Lla Koto are in 14th position on the log, The Team of Choice parted ways with Turkish export Muhsin Ertugral on Monday after he’d spent just five matches in charge. His last game was a defeat against NFD side Witbank Spurs in the Nedbank Cup Last 32 draw last weekend.

The club has since appointed Eric Tinkler.

“Why are they suffering while I am available?” Ngubane asked.

“It’s painful. They ignore talented South African football coaches. You can’t even get a job at the MultiChoice Diski Challenge [PSL reserve league].

“I’m even available for any NFD side that would like to get promoted to the Absa Premiership. If you are black and you can’t speak English well, they assume you can’t coach. Football is not about English, it is about man management and getting the best out of the players.”

In the past, Ngubane was known as a go-to coach for struggling clubs, including the Bush Bucks, Thanda Royal Zulu, Golden Arrows and Black Leopards. He saved most from being relegated.

Last year, he coached Swaziland’s Mbabane Highlanders, taking them from the bottom half of the league table to number five.

“We were doing well. We played cup semifinals and finals, but the problem came when we played Mbabane Swallows [in September], who were also playing in the CAF Champions League at the time and we had played only preseason games,” Ngubane said.

The encounter between Highlanders and Swallows is the biggest derby in Swaziland.

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