Team of Choice choose well
Rookie Davids ready, willing and able to deliver on his mentor’s five-year coaching plan
THE Team of Choice made the obvious choice when Fadlu Davids was announced as Maritzburg United’s new head coach yesterday.
Davids, the favourite for the post vacated by Roger de Sa earlier this year, secured a twoyear contract for his first head coach assignment.
The 36-year-old former club captain makes the transition from assistant coach after twice filling in as interim head coach last season.
He first stood in when German Ernst Middendorp resigned during the first half of the season, and later when De Sa left.
In 14 matches in charge in all competitions, the Capetonian lost twice, won the Coach of the Month accolade in April, and guided the KZN Midlands club to their highest finish of seventh place and a top eight spot for the second time.
Although one of the youngest coaches in the country, Davids believes it is the ideal time for him to step up.
“I was fortunate my mentor Ernst Middendorp set out a five-year plan for me to not jump into a head coach position before that, but take my five years in terms of getting my licences, gaining the experience. It’s five and a half years now and time to take that step and be the head coach and continue the success we had last season,” said Davids.
Following that bright spell, Maritzburg chairman Farook Kadodia set a mandate to steer the team to a top five league finish next season and take the side to one cup final, and Davids, the holder of a Uefa B coaching licence, is relishing the opportunity.
“The project is really exciting with all the young players coming through. Everybody talks about the coaching philosophy. Of course every coach wants to bring an attacking style and wants to play expansive football, but the players determine that.
“Fortunately we have a lot of dynamic players, a lot of pace and players with penetration and dribbling skills, and it’s my job to get them to showcase their talent and their one versus one skills. We’ll continue playing that attractive, high intensity game,” he promised.
Maritzburg open their campaign in August with an MTN8 clash against league runners-up Mamelodi Sundowns.
Davids will be assisted by his younger brother Maahier, while a second assistant coach is yet to be appointed. FADLU DAVIDS