Women coaches urged to aim high
ZIFA president Philip Chiyangwa has urged women coaches to overcome fear and intimidation to scale greater heights in the most followed sport in the world.
Speaking during the closing ceremony of the Caf D Women Football Coaching Course at a Bulawayo lodge on Thursday, Chiyangwa told participants that the certificate should be the beginning of a great coaching career.
Chiyangwa said possibilities are endless and women should not fear earning coaching badges that would allow them to even coach male teams at the highest level. It was the first Caf D course exclusively held for women coaches in the country and was facilitated by top Fifa women coaching instructor, Jacqueline Shiphanga.
“You are the first to do this course so we want to see a progression, don’t stop at this level please. As you grow in the profession and take up higher courses we will open room for other coaches to learn what you have learnt.
“This is the starting point; remember there are higher levels which you should aspire to take up. Don’t just eye coaching women but also look at the men’s teams. Aspire to go and coach the country’s top teams such as Highlanders and Dynamos and others in the Premier League,” said Chiyangwa.
He urged the coaches to emulate Mighty Warriors coach, Sithethelelwe “Kwinji 15” Sibanda who attained the Caf A coaching course with the highest marks, outdoing her male counterparts she took the course with.
“Kwinji is now eligible to coach any team in Zimbabwe. She can take over the reins at any PSL club because she is qualified like any other male coach, so you should also be like her. She got the best marks when she attained Caf A, she can coach Highlanders or Dynamos or any team so we want you to be like her.
“It is important that you train until you obtain the highest qualifications that can also open greater doors beyond Zimbabwe and there is also the option of becoming an instructor just like Shipanga,” said Chiyangwa.
The four-day course was being held as part of the legacy plans of the ongoing 2017 Cosafa Women’s Championships that kicked off on Wednesday and ends next Sunday. Thirty-one participants from all over the country took part course whose age range was between 18 and 51.
Zimbabwe Women Football chairperson, Elizabeth Kanonge said it was great to see a cross section of women understanding they can make the mark in football.
Shipanga praised Zifa leadership for giving opportunities for female footballers and coaches.
She said the Cosafa Women’s Cup should be held every year and not haphazardly if there is going to be consistent development in the women’s game.
“It is sad that this year we have annual event on the African calendar not this year and then three years there is nothing. The tourney is already preparing the teams for the Afcon for women qualifiers that start in December.
“Our content at Fifa is the same throughout the world so what they (coaches) learnt here is the same that someone in Brazil or Mexico will go through. I believe the coaches here have a lot of potential which should be developed,” she said.