By Felix Katongo

The truth about life is no one will ever take you seriously, unless you take yourself seriously first!

Yesterday, following #Bafaana #Bafaana’s defeat at the hands of the Herve Renard- coached Moroccan national soccer team, various online news media around the world carried the story of Herve Renard responding to questions about whether the South African FA had approached him.

In response, he said it’s a pity they had gone to the press, but that yes they had in 2016 and they could not agree on a deal because they found him to be expensive.

I found this interesting because I realised that once upon a time, Herve Renard came to Zambia and because of the respect he was shown, he didnt mind the financial gain or the lack of it. He even came back a second time and ditched Angola in 2011.

I remember when Herve Renard first came to Coach our national team in 2008. He had to endure all kinds of negativity. To some, he was inexperienced, to others he was just “a physical trainer”. But to a few positive minded people, Herve was the spark that our team needed to turn our fortunes.

Fast forward in 2011 when our then FAZ President, #Kalusha #Bwalya, singularly head hunted him and engineered a famous return to the Chipolopolo dug-out for Renard, as usual, the nay sayers were the first to react, with all kinds of negativity.

TODAY, Herve Renard is one of the most sought after coaches on the continent. With Two Afcon Trophies and a World Cup Qualification under his belt, he is indeed the epitome of success.

Herve Renard’s story should teach us a cardinal truth about negativity and success. The game of football thrives on unity of purpose, and tonnes of self belief and confidence.

In my country, #Zambia, may we refrain from being a people who are always condemning leadership. We condemned #KalushaBwalya for bringing #Renard. We condemned Renard for giving us the players, some much needed tough love and hard discipline. We condemned our own players when we failed to defend the Afcon. We even embarrassed our captain #CK11 on falsehoods gotten from God knows where.

Today it’s the same. We have new stars in the team and we have new Officials at football house. Our negative attitudes, however, remain the same. We find it easier to talk bad about players than to build. Let us start supporting our team and our leadership. Like the songs say, Nangu Tuwine nangu tulisa #Chipolopolo. Remember it is the only team we have which we can proudly call our own. These are our #heroes.

May the story of the French Physical Trainer, with the Passion for African Success, the Special #Herve #Renard, inspire us to stay focused and resilient.

Our next aim is to qualify to the world cup. If we for once push in one direction as a nation, we can achieve it, Yes We Can.

We are the Copper Bullets, there is nothing we cannot Gun down.

#Chipolopolo #HerveRenard #Bafaana #Bafaana #2012Champions #WhiteShirt


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