Kick Off



Roger de Sa will not be the only South African on a technical team at next January’s Cup of Nations finals.

Mamelodi Sundowns physical trainer Riedoh Berdien is part of The Gambia’s staff as they make their debut at tournament under Tom Saintfiet, the Belgian who coached at Free State Stars.

“I met Riedoh back in 2014 at Stars where he was at the time the physical coach. And we had a good experience together. And since that moment, we work constantly together,” explains Saintfiet to KICK OFF.

“Riedoh went with me to Bangladesh, he joined me when I was national coach of Trinidad and Tobago, and now also in Gambia. So since 2014, he is always at my side. When I am offered a job, it’s always one of the demands for me to have him on my coaching staff.

“He is a top physical coach. He knows exactly his job, and probably one of the best in Africa and even in the world,” enthuses the Gambia boss, who qualified the tiny west African country to their first finals by finishing top of their group ahead of Gabon and eliminatin­g both Angola and the Democratic Republic of Congo. “Secondly, he is also kind of an assistant coach for me. We work so long together that he knows

exactly my philosophy, and the way I want to work. He, therefore, does a lot of the parts of the training sessions.

“And over the last few years, he’s also been doing the video analysis on the opponents.”

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Riedoh Berdien
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