Samaria backs Shalulile to reach higher figures
By Michael Uugwanga
BRAVE Warriors coach Bobby Samaria has said that he see no reason why in-form striker Peter Shalulile will not reach higher figures for the Brave Warriors, following Shalulile’s brace against Guinea over the weekend to equal Rudolf Bester’s all-time 13 goals for the national team.
Shalulile helped Namibia beat Guinea 2-1 in their final group A 2021 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifier match -even though Namibia had already bowed out for a place to Cameroon next year where AFCON will be taking place- after Mali and Guinea had already qualified before Saturday’s result.
Shalulile has now scored 16 goals this season for both club and country, of which 14 goals are for Mamelodi Sundowns in South Africa and two for the Brave Warriors.
Speaking to Confidente Sport this week, Samaria is confident that the 28-year-old Shalulile has what it takes to reach greater heights.
“I am not surprised at all about Peter. The boy has energy, self-belief, and ability to run between shoulders of the defenders as he keeps defenders on their toes.
“The goals were already in the making. I am sure he will not stop scoring any time soon. I see no reason why he cannot reach double figures like 26 goals for the Brave Warriors.”
In South Africa, Shalulile’s exuberant goal celebrations have attracted a lot of attention, something that Samaria said he too enjoys.
“Of course I do enjoy his celebrations but only if he does not jump over billboards as he could damage himself. Even his teammates are starting to emulate his goal celebrations.”
The win for Namibia over Guinea was Namibia’s first win over the West African giant in 10 attempts, with their first encounter going way back to 1995 in a double header to the 1996 AFCON in which Guinea won 3-0 in Guinea before the two teams played to a goalless draw in Windhoek.
“The win was always never about me but about the players. We were pretty good in most departments and we were clinical upfront with the two goals and also in the defence. It was a collective effort. You all know that this was our 10th attempt to beat Guinea,” said Samaria.
Samaria was appointed interim coach of the national team after succeeding former coach Ricardo Mannetti in 2019 and helped Namibia qualify to the Africa Nations Championship (CHAN) tournament that was held in Cameroon and also helped Namibia reached the proper group stages of the 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifiers.
Samaria’s contract came to an end yesterday, however sources close to Confidente Sport have said that the coach will be given a new contract by the Namibia Football Association (NFA).
“I was given three mandates as the head coach on a short notice. One was to qualify the team to CHAN and we did that on my first attempt, the other mandate was to qualify the team to the group stage of the World Cup qualifiers and we did that and the other one was to qualify to AFCON , and only two we have managed to achieve.
“Remember that we have ended the AFCON campaign on eight points and in 2019 we qualified to the AFCON with eight points, which clearly shows you that it is the nature of football … in 2019 we qualified to AFCON with eight points”.