In England, no coach/manager can perform rescue acts like Sam Allardyce, he steers clubs from the depths of oblivion to the cusp of ‘success’, which loosely translates to saving clubs from relegation and a mid-table finish. Despite the rescue acts, something always happens in the long run to dent his tenure at a club.
Botswana’s equivalent of Sam Allardyce is none other than the charismatic, outspoken and sometimes controversial Daniel ‘Chicco’ Nare, the former Extension Gunners coach has had his fair share of rescue acts in the BTC Premiership and the lower leagues, the man loves a challenge and more often than not he has been the epitome of the reality that underdog stories usually have a happy ending, with a twist.
Solid results follow him almost everywhere he goes but he always has the extra luggage of not being able to build a long term project. Bad luck, looking for greener pastures or simply being the victim of regime change are some of the reasons why one of Botswana’s brightest coaching talents has failed to land that elusive silverware he craves. He has become somewhat of a ‘journeyman’ in the BTC Premiership in recent years, he has coached the likes of Gunners (three spells), BMC (three spells), Township Rollers (as an interim coach), Mochudi Centre Chiefs (in an interim position), Letlapeng and Orapa United.
During the 2011/2012 season Nare took a BMC side (now named Gilport Lions) that, based on its reputation and lack of big name players, had no right to be among the best clubs in the country and turned them into title challengers.
BMC were a blend of a conservative and entertaining side, knowing when to turn up they style and when to be pragmatic, they scored only 35 goals and impressively had the best defence in the country (conceding only 21 goals).
BMC finished second in 2012 and Nare won the Coach of the Season award, which remains his greatest individual honour in local football. Nare’s BMC side had the likes of Kemmy Pilato, Flo Kgetholetsile, Motsholetsi Sikele and Leutlwetse Tshireletso who were all elevated to a higher level under the tutelage of Nare.
Ownership changes resulted in financial problems for the club and this ultimately trickled down to him as contract issues became a stumbling block for Nare as he ultimately left the club in 2015. Nare then joined struggling club Letlapeng in January, the club was rock bottom of the league and destined to be relegated. Nare coached the club for only three games and resigned in February citing unsatisfactory results, this preserved Nare’s record of never being relegated in his career, a record he shares with Allardyce.
Convenient as it was for Nare to leave before the club could confirm their inevitable fate of doom, Letlapeng still went on to be relegated at the end of the season, he had jumped the shit before it sank. The coach then went into free agency but was later snapped up by Gunners (for the third time), the lure of his beloved Gunners was too hard to turn down, despite reports that he did not sign a long term contract during his third spell.
Nare reportedly coached the club without a contract but he was offered a three year deal, which included a pay cut, the deal did not appeal to the coach and he ultimately resigned following unfulfilled promises.
Nare’s next job was in Serowe with Miscellaneous, the cash strapped club had the worst pre-season preparation as players did not have training equipment and clothing such as trainers. Despite the off field struggles, Nare masterminded the club’s best start to a league season, they were third on the log after the first eight games of the season.
In a move similar to his departure from Chiefs around 2006-2007 to join the Rollers coaching staff, he left a well placed club (Miscellaneous) in November to try to improve the fortunes of a club in crisis (Orapa United), it is in his nature to mastermind fairytale turnarounds but this story did not have a happy ending.
The coach took a calculated risk to try to win the Mascom Top 8 with Orapa as the team had been performing well in the cup. Orapa offered Nare the best and the shortest route to ending his trophy drought, he was roped in as the interim coach and he helped guide the team to the Mascom Top 8 final.
Prior to his arrival at Orapa, the club was situated in the 10th spot on the log with rumours of dressing room unrest and low confidence. He helped the team elevate to fourth on the log and reach the cup final. As fate would have it, Nare’s rescue act proved to be short-lived as the events leading up to the Top 8 final culminated in his suspension from and eventual departure from the club. According to reports, the fact that he was not allowed to lead the team in the final led to disagreements at admin level. The former Maletlamotse FC coach had, once again, saw his rebuilding efforts torn to shreds.
His latest journey has taken him to 14th placed Security Systems who are languishing in the relegation zone, Nare has been tasked with ensuring that the club survives relegation. Initially, his tenure was supposed to begin in June but the appointment has since been fast tracked as the club feels his presence could help them avoid the dreaded relegation axe.
He took charge of the team’s training sessions last week and had an instant impact as his ideas led to their 1-0 win over TAFIC with him watching in the stands. When asked by Gazette Sport to explain why he has never been given a long term shot in recent years the coach briefly stated, “A coach is not the one who wins a trophy, a chairman with a solid vision is the key to a coach’s success.” The complex yet insightful nature of his answer paints a picture of Nare, an enigma and a gift that keeps on giving.