Sports

‘NO JIM AND JACK’

By MICHAEL MIYOBA and GRACE CHAILE LESOETSA
LOCAL clubs should ensure that no Jim and Jack is engaged to play football in Zambia on the basis of being a foreigner, says former national soccer team coach Wedson ‘Wada’ Nyirenda.
Nyirenda who once witnessed a local game which had more than 15 foreign players when he was national team coach said there is need for FAZ to introduce a selection policy which will guide local clubs on the quality of foreign players to sign.
Wada said he has always been crying for the introduction of a quota system because the huge number of foreign players at various local clubs make it difficult for a national team coach to select players to represent the country.
He said Zambia cannot make a proper national team now that the country has a huge number of foreign players in the local league.
Wada said the quota system should be implemented as soon as possible to as it will compel clubs to invest in local talent.
“We kill ourselves. The influx of foreign players has been going on for a long time and now we are in this mess where we seem not to have good players as a country.
“It is not every Jim and Jack that can juggle the ball around the border there who should come to Zambia and play but this is what has been happening, as long as someone can juggle the ball ati yoh ni pro muleteni ku Zambia, (he is a professional bring him to Zambia),” Nyirenda said.
He said there is need for Zambia to emulate the South African PFL which has strict guidelines for foreign players wishing to play in South Africa.
Wada recommended that foreign players wishing to play in Zambia should at least play more than ten games for their respective countries’ national teams to be able to add value to the Zambian game.
Meanwhile, the Footballers and Allied Workers Union of Zambia (FAWUZ) says the quota on foreign players must strictly ensure only players that feature for top flight leagues or national team can clinch a deal in the Super Division.
FAWUZ general secretary, Linos Chalwe said it was disheartening to see some foreign players who are not even known in their respective countries’ league make the starting 11 over the many Zambian talented players.
Chalwe said no foreign player should play in the lower division as is the case because it is a platform for developing young talent.
Chalwe who disputed claims by some clubs that Zambian players are not equal to the task wondered how clubs with many expatriate players still struggle to win the league as they spend time fighting relegation.

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