Manetti worried by lack of NPL
By: Lesley Tjiueza
Brave Warriors Coach Ricardo Manetti has described the current lack of NPL football in the country as deeply worrying. His concerns focus mainly on Namibia’s upcoming assignments against Guinea Bissau and Zimbabwe.
With no Premier League football in Namibia since May last year, the senior team’s mentor Manetti has been left scratching his head.
“I am very worried. It’s almost 10 months that players have not been active. We as the technical team get paid to sometimes work under unorthodox situations and it’s our jobs to fix this and make sure the players are ready.” Manetti told NBC Sport.
Manetti’s team won the COSAFA cup in 2015 and guided the Brave Warriors to a plates final in 2016. The team has also been drawn to compete against Zimbabwe in the 2018 African Nations Championship (CHAN) in July in the second round, with the winner to face either Lesotho or the Comoros en route to Kenya 2018.
The lack of football has made Manetti weary of the local players at his disposal.
“At the moment it doesn’t look good. We first have to train our boys. Get them active, then maybe we can give a good account of ourselves.” Added Manetti.
Apart from the African engagements, Namibia still has the COSA cup to compete in during the winter and the current crop of players make for a rather bleak prognosis for the future.
Namibia’s current team members are:
- Deon Hotto, who plays for Bloemfontein Celtics
- Peter Shalulile & Chris Katjiuukua, who play for Highlands Park.
- Willem Mwedihanga and Benson Shilongo, who play for Platinum Stars
- Hendrick Somaeb, Denzyl Haoseb and Ananias Gebhardt, who play for Jomo Cosmos
- Goalkeeper Vigil Vries and Max Mbaeva, who are active for Maritzburg United and Golden Arrows respectively.
- Absalom Iimbondi, who plays for Mochundi Centre Chiefs in Botswana
- Wangu Gome, who has been inactive at Bidvest Wits
Ronald Ketjijere: Captain of the team; contracted to African Stars but they have been inactive. He has been working for Weder, Kauta and Hoveka.
Dennis Ngueza: African Stars defender whp has been inactive and will only get back into action when the Debmarine Namibia Cup kicks off.
Da Costa Angula: Clubless
Benjamin Nenkavu : With Unam but also inactive due to the League situation.
Ikuaterua Keimuine and Terberius Lombard: belong to Tura Magic but they are yet to
play since the COSAFA Cup last year
Despite a lack of game time for most of the players, Namibia is still in the top 100 countries in the Fifa Ranking. They are tied in 99th place with Finland.