Sikhumbuzo Moyo, Acting Sports Editor
THE Confederation of African Football (Caf) have made a huge change of policy by allowing Caf B coaching certificate holders to sit on the bench for the forthcoming continental interclub competitions in a move that is expected to cascade down to individual associations’ domestic leagues.
Previously only Caf A certificate holders were allowed to sit on the bench and while other associations did not make it mandatory for coaches in their domestic leagues to have Caf A in order to be licenced to sit on the bench, Zifa took a hard stance and barred any coach not holding a Caf A badge from sitting on the bench, especially in the Premier Soccer League where the head coach and assistant ought to be Caf A holders while for the second tier league, the head coach must hold a Caf B qualification.
In correspondence to the Zifa chief executive officer Joseph Mamutse, dated November 16 and seen by this publication, in which Caf acting secretary general Abdelmounaim Bah was confirming receipt of coaching licences for FC Platinum which is participating in the Total Caf Champions League, the Caf Technical and Development Committee confirmed to ‘exceptionally allow the participation of head coaches holding valid Caf B licence for countries that haven’t organised any Caf A courses in the past five years.’
The continental motherbody froze holding of the courses in a bid to review the coaching syllabus.
“Reference to the licencing procedure for the Caf interclub season 2020/21, we confirm receipt of the coaching licenses for your participating clubs.
“Kindly note that the Caf Technical and Development Committee has confirmed application of the below coaching requirements in the Caf interclub competitions 2020/21 season; mandatory valid Caf A licence for the head coaches of participating teams, to exceptionally allow the participation of head coaches holding valid Caf B licence for countries that haven’t organised any Caf A courses in the past five years, to entitle head coaches holding Uefa Pro licence or other confederations valid Pro licence subject to providing a letter of recognition of competence from Caf, to not recognise any other head coaches with confederation on national diplomas/certificates,” wrote the acting Caf secretary general.
While the new requirement is specifically for Caf interclub competitions, it is almost certain that it will cascade down to domestic leagues in member associations, including the non-recognition of Uefa A badge holders in what observers believe is Caf’s way of hitting back against Uefa.
“Look, our Caf A holders cant coach in Europe, that is a fact because Uefa said only Pro licence holders can coach top tier clubs but not Caf A yet the same coaches holding Uefa A would flood Africa coaching even national teams so probably Caf saw that as a big brother mentality,” said one observer.