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17.11.2004 Football News

Italian coach in town for Black Stars' job

Italian coach in town for Black Stars' job
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Dujkovic has NOT been selected -GFA Italian, Roberto Landi, 48, a former coach of the Georgian national team is in town, hoping to be interviewed by the GFA for the Black Stars' coaching job.

The coach who arrived in the country on Friday told the GNA Sports on Tuesday that he had what it takes to take the Black Stars to the 2006 World Cup in Germany, considering his background and attitude to work. He said he had applied for the job and had received notification of receipt of his application from the GFA but that was the last he heard from them, compelling him to sojourn to Accra to present himself for scrutiny.

A former Serie A goalkeeper with Bologna, Piacenza, Modena and Siena coach Landi said he played 18 matches in charge of Georgia, won nine, lost five and drew four.

He said his primary objective would be to change the mentality of Ghanaian players and develop their tactics to the level that they would know when to do what with the ball.

"Tactical indiscipline had been the bane of Ghanaian teams and it will be my duty to teach and enforce tactics so that the team will not deviate from set out goals to its own detriment."

Supporting his status with a dossier containing a CV, certificates and numerous newspaper cut-outs, the coach said as soon as he was appointed, he would get full sponsorship for the national team so that the players would turn out in uniforms at all fora and play in quality jerseys and kits.

"It is unfortunate that Ghana has never played at the World Cup despite the high quality technique displayed by Ghanaian players and the abundance of talent in the country" and attributed to it wrong coaching methods which had been applied over the years.

He faulted the Meteors drawn game with Italy during the Olympic games in Athens saying that if he were in charge, the match would have been won and lost, the moment Ghana went two, nil up.

"When you score two goals in a match, you need good tactical discipline to keep your lead and end the match victorious, instead of indulging in practices that will open your rear up and force you to concede goals."

Coach Landi said one of his priorities as a national team coach will be to form a standby team made up of 25 local players and liase with the club coaches of the players to straighten out their rough edges in tactical efficiency.

He said he was very well connected with the Italian Federation and other sports development agencies and would persuade them to fund a trip of the local team to play friendly matches in Europe at least six times in a year.

"I want a long term contract to develop the player base and infuse good local players into the national team with the right mentality and conditioning that will place a high premium on success," he said. On money, the Italian said what he wanted was not money but a challenge to prove himself and that, he would demand a bonus payment if he qualified Ghana to Germany 2006.

"I need money to survive but the issue is that I am not going to make any outrageous demands, but instead, I shall appreciate if I am paid a bonus for a job well done in addition to a moderate salary and sign on fee.

A perusal of the coach's credentials revealed that he was a goalkeepers' trainer with the United States national team for the 1990 and 1994 World Cups in Italy and the USA respectively.

Apart from his three-year stay in Georgia as Head Coach, coach Landi was also in charge of Lithuania for 15 matches.

In 2001 he attended Coverciano Technical School of the Italian Football Federation for a "Master Professional Patent," after which he was appointed Technical Director of Serie A club, Messina.

Roberto Landi also holds FIFA and UEFA coach's licences.

Meanwhile the GFA has denied media speculations that Serbian Ratomir Dujkovic had been selected for the Black Star's job. In a telephone conversation with Dr Nyaho Nyaho-Tamakloe, chairman shortly after meeting with coach Landi, he said though the exercise had not ended, he was not aware of the presence in the country of the Italian.

He said the GFA had shortened the list of applicants to three and would not comment further on the issue.

Frenchman, Philippe Troussier and Dujkovic were making. While the Frenchman was reported to be asking for at least 22 thousand dollars per month the Serbian was said to be demanding 18 thousand dollars per month.

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