A ROLLING stone gathers no moss, so goes the old adage.
This might be true for Castle Lager Premier Soccer League (PSL) coaches if events of the last 48 hours are anything to go by.
Wikipedia says: “It (the adage) is credited to Publilius Syrus, who in his book Sententiae states, people who are always moving, with no roots in one place, avoid responsibilities and cares.”
As such, the proverb is often interpreted as referring to figurative nomads who avoid taking on responsibilities or cultivating or advancing their own knowledge, experience, or culture.
Another interpretation equates “moss” to “stagnation”, as such the proverb can also refer to those who keep moving as never lacking for fresh ideas or creativity.
The later interpretation (never lacking for fresh ideas or creativity), might be true for the PSL coaches.
In just 48 hours, three PSL coaches have lost their jobs, and three have replaced them.
This is the merry-go around that has characterised the second third of the league. While four coaches lost their jobs over a period of a month, August 25 and 26 was different.
Luke Masomere quit Buffaloes and headed to Bulawayo to take over at How Mine. He replaces Philani Ncube who had thrown in the towel two weeks and had been replaced, in the interim by assistant coach Sheunesu Chaka.
Yesterday afternoon, Moses Chunga left the comfort zone of Harare and headed to Mutare to take charge of Buffaloes.
In Zvishavane, John Phiri needed a technical advisor in the form of Jairos Tapera, the FC Platinum Under-19 side coach. Phiri wanted to leave Shabanie.
Tapera’s move to Shabanie is understandable — the asbestos miners are an integral part of Zvishavane football and cannot be allowed to be relegated to Division One. Platinum will continue to pay Tapera’s salary while Shabanie will take care of his bonuses.
In fact, Platinum do not want Shabanie to be relegated. This will kill the development of the game in the mining town and destroy the increasing influence of the Central Region, which also has Chapungu, based in Gweru.
The presence of three teams from the Central Region, plus four from Bulawayo and one from Hwange, means the game is spread across the country.
We also have teams in Kariba, although ZPC Kariba play in Harare, Buffaloes in Mutare, Black Rhinos in Kadoma, Chiredzi Football Club and Triangle with Harare having three — City, Dynamos and Caps United.
Away from that, it is the manner in which coaches change clubs and with just nine games before the end of the season, it’s all about relegation and money issues now.
How Mine are more financially stable than Buffaloes, so Masomere would prefer that kind of environment.
The movement of coaches has characterised the last 11 matches of the PSL. Chunga was the first to bite the dust at Chiredzi due to poor results and disagreements with team management. He was replaced by Gishon Ntini, but chances of maintaining their status in the PSL are next to nothing.
Lloyd Mutasa followed at FC Platinum. He was the worst Platinum coach since 2011, in terms of statistics, and was given the longest reign. He averaged a goal per game, and when he left his side had scored 18 in matches.
The club’s most successful coach was Rahman Gumbo, who finished his first year in second position with 58 points and averaged two goals per game. So any coach, who is below the standard set by Gumbo is a failure at Platinum and under Mutasa, there was no way he could have bettered that 2011 record.
Norman Mapeza is the new coach at FC Platinum and has already lost his first league match at home to Highlanders. In three weeks, he faces Dynamos. It can’t get any worse.
Bigboy Mawiwi took Harare City to third last season, but politics at the club at the start of the year ensured he had inadequate preparation to build on to that.
The axe was always coming and has been replaced by Masimba Dinyero who is unbeaten in five matches.
Philani Ncube, like Mawiwi, had a fairytale run at How Mine and even took them to the second round of the Caf Confederation Cup, but he could not motivate the players anymore and quit.
Arthur Tutani was always standing by the door at Black Rhinos, having threatened to quit in June before finally being shoved off this month to make way for Joisten Mathuthu.
Away from the coaches, one cannot ignore “boxer” Rodreck Mutuma. In over 48 hours of madness, he fought against two players, one from Black and Rhinos and his own captain Murape Murape.
This is sad.
To me, Murape is just blue and white, the DNA of Dynamos at this stage, whether one likes it or not. The rest of the players in the team are looking for jobs. Murape is not and this was just total disrespect from Mutuma.
2014 coaches roll-call so far
Philani Ncube — Luke Masomere
Lloyd Mutasa — Norman Mapeza
Bigboy Mawiwi — Masimba Dinyero
Luke Masomere — Moses Chunga
Arthur Tutani — Joisten Mathuthu
Moses Chunga — Gishon Ntini
Jairos Tapera (technical advisor) to John Phiri