With each passing day, it is increasingly evident that Baltemar Brito will not retain his position as the Warriors’ coach. The Brazilian mentor’s contract expired on December 31, 2023, as he was offered a short-term deal by the ZIFA Normalization Committee when he was appointed in September.
Due to work permit issues, the Lincoln Mutasa-led administration was forced to offer the former Chelsea assistant coach a contract that ran concurrently with his Highlanders deal, which was not renewed beyond December 31 by the Bulawayo giants.
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While it might seem easy for the NC to retain Brito as the national team coach, it’s actually not. Several dynamics are involved in the decision, including the complications and costs of tying down the 71-year-old mentor. Brito might not necessarily be expensive in terms of wage demands, but securing a work permit for the soft-spoken coach is not as cheap and easy as many believe.
Moreover, Mutasa and company might be caught between a rock and a hard place concerning offering Brito a long-term contract. The NC’s tenure ends in six months, meaning if they offer the national team coach a lengthy contract, they will essentially be forcing the next ZIFA board to adopt the individual they would have chosen.
The complexities and costs involved in hiring Brito, experienced before with other foreign coaches, have led Mutasa and company to consider a local coach. The decision to choose the next coach for the national team, given these considerations, remains a topic of debate.