Tracking down unheralded midfield kingpin Mekondjo Tobias

Tracking down unheralded midfield kingpin Mekondjo Tobias

Without a shadow of doubt, one of the relatively less-talked-about, but certainly most gifted midfielder of his generation, former Blue Waters, Tigers and Eleven Arrows’much-travelled attacking midfielder Mekondjo Tobias will go down in history as one of the very few well-polished ball distributors of all time.

The gangling playmaker was always a marvel to watch, bewitching the spherical object glued at his feet with the precision of seasoned butcher whilst his trademark long, ball passes attracted the imagination and admiration of many football fans, including the neutral supporters. 

Stepping in the big shoes of club legend Matatias ‘Koko’ Muatunga was always going to be a mountain Kilimanjaro to scale, but the Oniipa-born attacker was equal to the task at hand. Mekondjo surprised friend and foe, as he masterfully dished out jaw-dropping performances week in and week out for the ‘Beautiful Birds’.

After numerous unsuccessful attempts to track down the much-travelled slippery midfielder, New Era Sport finally managed to round up the now retired mild-mannered, well-spoken midfielder as he relives his amazing football journey that saw him strut his stuff for no less than six of the country’s leading football clubs in the top echelons of the national flagship league.


orn Mekondjo Tobias on 4 December 1984 in the now-upgraded village town of Oniipa, holed up in the vastly-populated Oshikoto region, northern Namibia just four years before Namibia attained her long-awaited Independence from Apartheid South Africa in 1990, young Tobias was destined for greatness.

After all, his football-playing uncles ‘Jerry’ and ‘Berro’ Tobias were great ‘footies’ in their own right, plying their trade with coastal giants Blue Waters and Windhoek-based Tigers Football Clubs, as well as the Augustineum Secondary School football team at different intervals.

The much-traveld strongly-built midfielder enjoyed a stellar playing career with several top clubs such as Eleven Arrows, Blue Waters, Orlando Pirates, Ramblers, Tigers and Sport Klub Windhoek (SKW), in that sequence. 

The versatile,tallish midfielder was comfortably deployed as a centre-back or central midfield. 

A very intelligent baller, Mekondjo possessed all the required attributes of a complete athlete, phenomenal game-reader, and could strike the ball fairly well from any range, using both feet with equal measure. 

However, his secret ammunition was his jaw-dropping, expertly-executed long passes when least expected from tight angles. He could easily open tight defences with those trademark splitting passes from range without shedding an ounce of sweat, reminiscent of Kevin de Bruyne.

Though he was not the fastest of players on the playing field, what he lacked in pace was made up by pure football intelligence. Tobias saw things others were unable to grip, with or without the ball. His off-the-ball running and perfect positioning was out of this world. Mekondjo could also dribble himself out of tight angles with amazing skill that left many football fans green with envy. 

Additionally, he could strike the ball well from range, and was a decent dead-ball specialist often registering his name of the score, sheet via free kicks from outside the penalty box. 

“I used to watch guys who played my position, closely following their technical ability. But I decided to create my own unique technique and overall style of play.  It really worked out well for me, hence I don’t really think there are players in the modern game who can replicate my style of play,” said Tobias tongue-in-cheek.       

Although he can be rightfully labelled a ‘bird of passage’, given the alarming rate at which he changed clubs in the same fashion a mother would change nappies, Tobias spent a significant chunk of his remarkable football career with boyhood team Kuisebmund outfit Blue Waters Football Club in the harbour town of Walvis Bay, located on the banks of the freezing Atlantic Ocean. 

His consistency and near-faultless display in the middle of the park did not go unnoticed, as he was called up to represent his motherland at an international level. Tobias boasts a remarkably filthy-rich resume that includes a gold medal of the Cell One Cup with Pirates.  He also tasted international club football when he came on as a second-half substitute against Angolan giants Premeiro de Agusto in the CAF Club Championship in Luanda with Blue Waters. 

And whilst many might be wondering how Tobias ended up at Pirates, it should be noted that uncle Benjamin ‘Berro’ Tobias also wore the black and white strip of the Buccaneers during his days at the revered Augustineum Secondary School. 

“That guy made it easy for me during my time at Blue Waters. Accurate, powerful behind the ball and that adrenaline-pumping defence-splitting passes place him right up there amongst the true legends of the game,” writes former teammate Thikameni Abel Thikameni.

 The author had the opportunity to watch the tallish midfield general in action on several occasions, and can proudly attest that Tobias was a rare breed. The boy played football the way the game should be played. Truthfully, he was a combo of Steven Gerrard, Paul Scholes and Frank Lampard in one package.  A real baller who entertained enthusiastic football fans with his amazingly well-executed long passes, Mekondjo will go down in history among the best ball distributors of all time. 

When the names of former Blue Waters’ teammate Jasehn ‘Khumalo’ Petrus, Daniel ‘Lucky’ Boostander, Willem ‘Botsotso’ Nanub, Congo Hindjou, Matatias Koko Muatunga, George ‘Aupaki’ Nawatiseb, Reinhard ‘Wagga’ Goagoseb and few others are mentioned, Tobias should be in that conversation, period.