McCarthy, Stephen Keshi Among African Football Legends Who Became Coaches

McCarthy, Stephen Keshi Among African Football Legends Who Became Coaches

  • After retirement, some African football talents went on to become managers
  • Former Nigerian international Stephen Keshi won the AFCON title as a player and as a coach
  • Bennie McCarthy, who was sensational for Bafana Bafana of South Africa, is now a member of Manchester United's coaching crew

After a glittering footballing career, a number of African football legends became managers, imparting their knowledge to young players.

Stephen Keshi, who captained Nigeria to glory at the 1994 Africa Cup of Nations in Tunisia, was in charge when the Super Eagles conquered the continent in 2013 in South Africa.

In 2021, Aliou Cisse was the manager as the Teranga Lions of Senegal became the AFCON kings; but ten years earlier, he was part of the squad that finished as runners-up in the competition.

Here we look at some African legends who became managers

Benny McCarthy

A sensational footballer for South Africa, McCarthy played a pivotal role as FC Porto won the prestigious UEFA Champions League. He was also the highest scorer in the Portuguese league in the same season.

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Benny McCarthy, Man Utd, Manager, South Africa
Benny McCarthy had a glittering footballing career before becoming a manager. Photo: Robbie Jay Barratt
Source: Getty Images

He also had stints with other European clubs including Ajax, Celta Vigo, and West Ham United before retiring at the local club Orlando Pirates.

In 2015, he was appointed assistant coach at Sint-Truiden and he went on to manage South African clubs Cape Town City and AmaZulu. Currently, he is a first-team coach at Manchester United.

Emmanuel Amuneke

Emmanuel Amuneke was part of the Super Eagles squad that won the AFCON tournament in 1994, and also played at the World Cup the same year.

Emmanuel Amuneke, Super Eagles, Nigeria, AFCON
Emmanuel Amuneke led Tanzania to their first AFCON since 1980. Photo: Michael Regan
Source: Getty Images

He performed well at the global showpiece, scoring against European outfits Bulgaria and Italy as he bagged the CAF Player of the Year Award.

He also scored the winning goal as Nigeria defeated Argentina to win gold at the Olympic Games in 1996.

After retirement, Amuneke became a manager and took Tanzania to their first AFCON tournament since 1980.

The tactician has managed Julius Berger, Ocean Boys, Nigeria's U17, Al Khartoum and Misr Lel Makkasa.

Stephen Keshi

Famously called ‘The Big Boss’, Stephen Keshi was sensational for Belgian outfit Anderlecht during his playing days, winning the league on two occasions.

Stephen Keshi, AFCON, Nigeria, Super Eagles
Stephen Keshi poses with the AFCON title. Photo: ALEXANDER JOE
Source: Getty Images

Keshi was part of the Super Eagles squad under Clemens Westerhof that won the AFCON tournament in Tunisia in 1994.

After he retired, he went into management and guided Nigeria to the AFCON tournament in 2013. He was also the coach of the Togo and Mali national teams at some point.

Hossam Hassan

Hossam Hassan is, no doubt, an AFCON legend who won the continental prize on three occasions. He enjoyed tremendous success with local clubs Al Ahly and Zamalek.

The sensational striker won a combined 14 Egyptian Premier League titles with both giants and twice enjoyed success on the continent.

Hossam Hassan, AFCON, Egypt, Pharaohs
Hossam Hassan won the AFCON title on three occasions. Photo: ABDELHAK SENNA
Source: Getty Images

Following his retirement from football, Hassan took to management taking charge of clubs like Al Masry, Telecom Egypt, Zamalek and Ismaily.

He was also the manager of Jordan national football team between 2013 and 2014.

Sunday Oliseh

Oliseh was an important member of the Super Eagles squad in the 90s. He scored one of the iconic goals in the World Cup when he fired home a belter in Nigeria’s 3-2 win over Spain in 1998.

Sunday Oliseh, AFCON, Super Eagles, Nigeria
Sunday Oliseh went on to become the Super Eagles coach. Photo: Erwin Spek
Source: Getty Images

At the club level, Oliseh won league titles with Ajax and Borussia Dortmund in ‘98 and ‘02 respectively.

Being a manager, Oliseh once handled the Super Eagles and then went on short coaching spells with Fortuna Sittard, Vervietois and 19 Straelen.

Aliou Cisse

Cisse guided the Teranga Lions of Senegal to AFCON glory in 2021 in Cameroon.

Aliou Cisse, Senegal, AFCON, Teranga Lions
Aliou Cisse led Senegal to AFCON glory in 2021. Photo: Kyodo News
Source: Getty Images

In 2012 when Senegal finished as runners-up in the AFCON tournament hosted by Gabon and Equatorial Guinea, Cisse was part of the squad.

During his playing days, Cisse featured for clubs like Paris Saint-Germain, Lille and Birmingham. He later became a manager and was also in charge of the Senegal U23 team.

Mahmoud El-Gohary

The former striker later became a manager. He was the first man to win the AFCON title as a player and manager.

Mahmoud El-Gohary, Egypt, AFCON, Pharaohs
Mahmoud El-Gohary won the AFCON title as a player and as a manager. Photo: Serge Philippot
Source: Getty Images

He was part of the Pharaohs that won the title in 1959. El-Gohary was the manager in 1998 when Egypt win the title.

How McCarthy is helping Man Utd strikers

Sports Brief earlier reported that the appointment of former Premier League striker, Benni McCarthy as one of Erik ten Hag's technical team members seems to have had a ripple effect on the club's fortunes this season.

McCarthy joined the Red Devils as an offensive coach after the season had begun.

He has so far been credited with Marcus Rashford's upturn in form, with the English forward the hottest commodity in European football at the moment.