28 December 2012

Tanzania: Kikwete Is Right to Slam TFF


YES! President Jakaya Kikwete is right to criticize Tanzania Football Federation (TFF) for failure to lead the country's soccer to a respectable status.

Last week, Kikwete once again pointed an accusing finger at the TFF's fragile leadership saying that the federation was a stumbling block to the nation's ambition to make it to a respectable level in soccer. He challenged the federation to aim at success at all times.

He said he had given up paying salaries to national team coaches due to the shoddy leadership at the TFF. The federation and the clubs are accused of failing to invest fully in youth development programmes. This, he said, is the best solution to football development worldwide. It is true.

Tanzania's poor performance in international soccer matches is clear proof that the country lacks seriousness and Kikwete is aware of this shortcoming. He is of the view that the TFF and local football club leaders need regular training on leadership skills. This could, perhaps, usher in improved performance. It is clear that the TFF and club leaders have failed to come up with workable strategic football development plans which focus on youth initiatives.

They are hardly aware that such tendency might discourage potential investors who wish to tap the sector. There is no clearly defined system that would help top clubs to get good players, from which the national team coach could select and form a strong Taifa Stars team.

It is time to break the silence and ask ourselves why our team has never made it in international competitions despite employing some of the best coaches in the world. Once again, it is important to remind ourselves that the path to success lies in the establishment of soccer academies and organizations of youth tournaments in streets, schools, colleges and universities.

It is equally important to understand that good players are nurtured and developed at the club level. They also need qualified and experienced trainers to prosper.

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