Mosimane has established himself as one of the most highly-respected coaches in Africa, having led Egyptian powerhouse club Al Ahly to back-to-back CAF Champions League titles, the Egypt Cup and consecutive CAF Super Cups since taking over at the helm of the team in 2020.
Last year was somewhat challenging as Al Ahly surrendered their Egyptian Premier League title to rivals Zamalek, while also missing out on the Egyptian Super Cup, but 2021 ended on a high when Al Ahly lifted the CAF Super Cup at the expense of Raja Casablanca.
The latest Coach of the Year award was ultimately won by Thomas Tuchel after his Champions League success with Chelsea, but Mngqithi – like many others – believes Motsimane should have at least been on seven-man shortlist.“We are very happy as South African coaches to have one of our ambassadors representing us at that stage and showing the world what he is capable of,” he said, as quoted by iDiski Times.
“Even now if we’re honest to ourselves, he’s been cheated by FIFA not to be given the Coach of the Season award, if you consider the amount of continental trophies that he won in one year.
“Maybe because he’s African, maybe because he’s coming from this continent he doesn’t deserve to get the credit he deserves. It’s difficult for one to win two Champions League and Super Cup in one year and still not be selected to be the Coach of the Season.
“But we have to respect those decisions because we Africans, we are humble, we are not arrogant but the truth of the matter is, if we were to look at the balance of everything, he should have been the one to take that award and it would have been great for South Africa.
“Maybe now he’s getting another chance to go to the Club World Cup and show the quality he can bring to the world.”
Mosimane has received widespread support
In an article for the highly-regarded New York Times, though, Rory Smith says the soccer world has imposed a ceiling when it comes to recognising the achievements of an African coach.
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“Mosimane has enjoyed a year that holds up in comparison to any of his peers. He has not, though, been granted the same recognition. When FIFA published its seven-member shortlist for its men’s coach of the year award a few weeks ago, Mosimane — who had lifted three continental honours in 2021 — was not on it.
“He was not the only notable omission. Abel Ferreira was not there, either, despite going one better than Mosimane and leading Palmeiras to two Copa Libertadores titles in the same calendar year. He did not make the top seven, let alone the top three. Those spots were taken by Thomas Tuchel, Pep Guardiola and Roberto Mancini.
“The pattern held for the women’s prize, too. Bev Priestman led Canada to an improbable Olympic gold in Tokyo, but she did not make the final cut, overlooked in favor of Lluís Cortés, Emma Hayes and Sarina Wiegman.
“It is not only Africa” that is overlooked, Mosimane said. “It is as though it does not mean as much when you win in the competitions that do not generate the most money, that do not have the biggest audiences.