Keshi’s new home, led by established player agent Tim Sukazi, has notable coaches currently in their stable in Steve Komphela of Kaizer Chiefs, Chippa United’s Dan Malesela and Muhsin Ertugral at Mpumalanga Black Aces. Like these men, the former Super Eagles coach and captain might have to start small to perhaps convince other potential high-profile suitors that he is more than ready to make the transition to club football.
“We concluded the deal with the Big Boss (Keshi’s popular nickname) over the last week or so and the plan, really, is to get him into the PSL,” Sukazi revealed. “As an agency we believe that he is a very good coach and a football legend on top of that. He is one of only two men (along with Egypt’s Mahmoud El-Gohary) to have won the Nations Cup as a player and a coach. We have always had an eye for talented coaches, and our mission is to take them out of the doldrums.
“One classic example would be that of Dan Malesela, who was coaching in the ABC Motsepe League (third tier) when I approached him.”
Keshi has indeed been in limbo since the ending of his complex relationship with the Nigerian Football Federation. He worked there for a combined spell of four years that was interrupted by abrupt resignations, later reversed “because Keshi loves his country”.
He earned the senior men’s team a place at the Brazil World Cup two years ago – they were eliminated in the round of 16, being knocked out by France.
“He is sitting at home now doing nothing, and, looking at our game, we need quality coaches,” said Sukazi. “I think Stephen Keshi’s arrival in SA will enhance the level of our game and this will give good exposure to our football. We are working very hard to find him a club and have mooted to club bosses his availability, but things are a bit slow, as expected, because the season is only wrapping up this month with one league game to go and we still don’t know who will be relegated.”
Sukazi said Keshi, despite his impressive CV, which includes guiding the Togo national team to their first ever World Cup tournament in Germany 2006 (before being replaced by Otto Pfister) is happy to work his way up. The agent added that his client would only consider working outside the borders of SA if he is offered a national team position.
“Our plan A is to obviously find him a team that suits his character and profile in the PSL, but we should also have a back-up plan. But, generally, I feel South African clubs are at the same level and all you need as a coach is an opportunity to prove yourself. Malesela is an example. I took him to a first division club (Cape Town All Stars) from the ABC Motsepe League and he was top of the log after eight games.
“That, to me, spoke to Dan’s quality even though they decided against continuing with him later on for some reason or the other. The same methodology should apply to Keshi. Yes, he is a high-profile coach and he is sound and reasonable enough,” he said.
Original source: ‘Big Boss’ Keshi eyes coaching job in PSL