Experienced Dutch coach Pieter De Jongh, who holds a Uefa Pro Licence, has applied for the post of Malawi national football team coach barely two days after Football Association of Malawi (FAM) advertised the vacancy.
In an interview, the 48-year-old coach said he aims to improve football from grassroots, a philosophy adopted from his country.
“Malawi has a lot of potential good players. I believe that I can bring success from bottom to national team,” he said.
Formerly a coach of a number of well-known Netherlands clubs like Alkmaar and Vitesse, De Jongh has also worked with African football associations. He was technical director for the Rwanda Football Federation and coach for e-Swatini (formerly Swaziland).
He also coached top Kenyan football club AFC Leopards which he guided to the Cecafa Club championship final.
De Jongh boasted that he is the right person for the job as he also has experience working with youth teams.
Among his other qualifications is a trainer coach youth diploma, a Fifa technical director certificate and Uefa Class A, B and C training licences.
“I am an all-rounder. I also worked as youth national coach for the Dutch Football Association and I have vast experience at senior level,” he said.
Meanwhile, FAM general secretary (GS) Alfred Gunda has said a lot of coaches expressed interest to take charge of the Flames even before the vacancy was officially declared.
“You will appreciate that even when there is a coach already, we still receive these expressions of interest. If you ask me that’s one of the mails every Football Association GS receives regularly,” he said.
Gunda said the short-listed coaches will undergo thorough assessment and the successful coach is expected to deliver good results.
“Together with Malawi Government, through the Malawi National Council of Sports, we will evaluate candidates using set tools and effective and efficient means. One thing that has to be noted is that the cost for delivering the results is part of the process,” he said.
Among the expatriates that expressed interest in the job before the vacancy was released are Jorge Añón De Leon (Uruguay), Fredrico Azolez (Peru) and Vincenzo Alberto Annese (Italy).
De Leon, 58, is Isef A Licence holder and former Granada and Indonesia national team coach while Annese, 34, is a Uefa Pro coach currently head coach of Liga 1 Indonesia club PSIS Semarang.