Whispers from the corridors of Liberian football have it that the era of local Coaches at least for the time being is over with the news that highly rated French Coach Pierre Mankowski is soon to take over the senior national team of Liberia the Lone Star.
The 67 year old tactician of Polish descent with more than 30 years of experience as a manager, had stints with French clubs Caen, Le Havre, Lille, St. Etienne and Strasbourg. He also served as manager of the National U-16, U-18 and U-21 of France between 1993 and 2016 as he became the U-21 winning Coach.
As a player, Mankowski featured for Lens, Hazebbrouck and Amiens all in France, between 1972 and 1983.
The report further has it that the French manager is expected in Liberia any time next week to probably put pen to paper.If the news is anything to go by, then Head Coach Thomas Kojo and his Deputy Sam Chebli both ex- internationals,. are taking the exit door.
The LFA disclosed that Coach Kojo prior to the home based trip to Senegal, signed a contract with the local football house agreeing to be sacked if he failed to qualify the team for the CHAN competition. Coach Kojo charges were hammered 3-0 by their Senegalese counterparts to erase a 1-0 deficit in Liberia.
One wonders as to how the French manager was selected or is soon to be selected when there was no advertisement for the job or if such is to happen soon, the writings are somehow on the wall for the manager’s selection just as the three former foreign Coaches of the Lone Star; Antoine Hey from Germany and Bertalan Bicskei and Roberto Landi from Hungary and Italy respectively were virtually handpicked by some.administrators and technicians at the LFA.as they controlled things from behind the scene.
Certainly, interesting days lie ahead, but the truth is that local Coaches have fallen out of favor with not just pundits but even the ordinary fans. The mediocre state of the team just proves how they.are miles behind contemporary coaching and must join clubs in the local league to compete as such will enable them gain more experience. They have being repeatedly tried but always failed. Besides, their selection process has being clouded with biasness as they recycle players and hardly watch league games. Long before a match, the Coaches are accused of already having 85 percent of their squad with current form relatively non-existent.
On the foreign front, Liberian players too are scattered round the world, but they don’t monitor and have no data base for these players and have their players with others dropped as a result of “football witch hunt”.
In a related development, LFA president Mustapha Raji when quizzed via phone as to whether it is true the LFA is soon to hire a foreign Coach responded on Saturday by saying “I don’t know”.