Only as a collective can we succeed – Benjamin

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Only as a collective can we succeed  – Benjamin

Otniel Hembapu

Newly-appointed Brave Warriors head coach Collin Benjamin yesterday said his tenure at the helm of the national team will not be a one-man show, but will be centred around collective efforts as a team, constant consultations and giving everyone an opportunity to make a contribution.

The Fifa-appointed Normalisation Committee for the Namibia Football Association (NFA) yesterday announced and unveiled Namibian football great Benjamin as the new head coach of the Brave Warriors for the next five years. 

He replaces veteran gaffer Bobby Samaria, who has since 2019 served as the interim head coach until his replacement yesterday. 

Amongst Benjamin’s immediate assignments is the 2022 Cosafa Cup in Durban, South Africa, where he will be expected to guide the Warriors to a respectable finish, if not winning the competition altogether. 

Qualifying Namibia to the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) is also one of his immediate tasks, with Normalisation Committee chairman Bisey Uirab yesterday saying it is imperative that Benjamin and the Warriors perform well in the two upcoming competitions as that will be the yardstick for the national team’s long-term objectives. 

“Amongst your first assignments is to ensure stability in the Brave Warriors and perform well in the forthcoming Cosafa Cup, which starts in about two to three weeks from now. You will also be tasked with ensuring Namibia qualifies for the 2023 Afcon, and to build a formidable team for the future.” 

“We also expect you to build a strong and forceful Brave Warriors for the 2027 Afcon, which Namibia is bidding to co-host with Botswana. It is up to you to choose and appoint whoever you want as part of your technical team. We as a committee will give you all the necessary support to ensure that you succeed in your new assignment. I know it won’t be easy, but we wish you all the best of luck in making our beloved Brave Warriors great again,” said Uirab.

On his part, Benjamin started off by thanking the committee for entrusting him with the national duty, but was quick to admit that there is a lot of work that needs to be done in moving the Warriors from great to even greater heights. 

“We have a lot of work to do, and I will rely and depend a lot on all football stakeholders, including the media, to assist me in taking the Brave Warriors to greater heights. I’m not naïve to the reality on the ground. I understand our situation here at home, where we have not played premiership football for some time now as a country, and that makes it a bit difficult for all. But I’m confident that collective efforts, constant consultations with all relevant stakeholders and bringing everyone on board can move us forward.” 

“I want to make the Brave Warriors the people’s team it used to be, and we can only achieve that as a collective. This is not a one-man show; it’s our project as Namibians,” he continued.