… Looks back on his career
By John Tuerijama
DESPITE the Namibia Premier League (NPL) having had dark days in recent years with the league struggling to kick off on time, the domestic elite league has produced and brought a number of notable foreign players to the fore, with one such player being William Chilufya. Confidente caught up with Chilufya who is based in Rundu and is the current assistant coach to Julinho FC and in a wide-ranging interview he spoke of his career with Civics FC and looked at a variety of issues hindering progress in the domestic league.
JT: Football fans have been asking what had happen to that prolific striker and of your whereabouts?
WC: Hi John, yes some fans might ask about me I retired from playing in 2015 while at Rundu Chiefs where I became an acting assistant coach player and then later I became full assistant coach. I had my best playing years
at Civics FC, where I played for four and a half good seasons. I played with great players of which almost the whole team donned the Brave Warriors’ jersey. I remember the first year I was with Civics FC, it was like eight national players but more came to join and strengthen the team. I played for Liverpool Okahandja. I played with great experience players like Bimbo Tjihero, Philimoni Namene before they retired, Killian Kavari, China Utoni, Congo Hindjou and many more. I went on to play for Blue Waters playing alongside Amanda Pedro, Berlin Acumeb, Tom Tuido , Fisher Kalimba,
the late Tuyen Tugela and many more experienced players.
JT: Having played for Civics FC in the MTC Premiership what is your highlight in your football career in Namibia? WC: Football in Namibia has treated me good. It took me to another level but with my discipline, willingness to play and hard work in my playing days I got my experience through experienced players I played with. I
have been moving from one club to another along with my young brother, Danny Chilufya, and I enjoyed being alongside him since he was a good player. I have enjoyed every moment I had of the game at all the clubs I played for in the country because I was working hard to be one of the best in the team. My career in this country brought a difference in my profession since I played high level
football in Namibia. And this country is my second home..
JT: Looking at the status of Namibian football how important is it for the NPL’s exco to kickstart the 2018/19 football season initially scheduled for August?
WC: The kick-off of the 2018/19 football season is what all the soccer fans want and are looking forward too. It is only that the players are bored being at home and for a while now clubs’ coaches are busy with their (charges) with pre-season training to avoid being u fit when the league finally kicks off. I wish the NPL executive best of luck in their quest to have the league start soon. Their efforts and plans will always be appreciated. JT: Now that you have retired from active football what are you busy with in terms of life after your football career, are you coaching a club?
WC: I am now an assistant coach with Julinho Football Club (FC), based in Rundu. That’s like giving back to the community that saw me playing and supported me and the boys that wished to one day play like I used to play.
JT: Having been a deadly striker during your playing days what is your impression of Namibia’s strikers. Do you think the senior national football team lacks strikers and that the lack of an active league negatively impacted on the national team having deadly goals-poachers?
WC: You know, it’s not easy to see strikers these days being consistent season after season but the competition between strikers
is less in the country with potential strikers suddenly leaving the country for greener pastures. Now the situation has changed with Premier League clubs struggling, teams that had two to three top strikers whom they can depend on. The scoring record is a bit down every year and I hope they (strikers) can concentratemore and more at each match with a different approach. Strikers need concentration and consistency in every season. I’m happy with Peter Shalulile’s consistent performance. He’s young and has a lot of running energy, not giving defenders any breathing space. He will reach far, I see he’s a different player in every game he plays and he looks to be well disciplined and must keep that up.
JT: Do you foresee a situation in the near future where the Namibian league becomes a semi or fully professional league?
WC: That will be good to see Namibian football to be semi-professional and I think in a few years’ time it will be. And when more
changes start coming, like doing away with double-headers. It is important for domestic Premier League clubs to engage their SADC counterparts in friendly marches that can be good to upgrade
the standard of our football locally. And help most players get exposure, so that it can be easy for them to be called up for national teams, but only if they (clubs) have enough
funds to secure friendly matches regionally.
JT: Of late we have had sport administrators fighting their battles through newspapers, what
will be your advice to the administrators on how best to resolve their issues?
WC: Infights by administrators through local newspapers is normal in football everywhere, you hear of these infights because football is the most admired and most watched sport in the world. Every sport lover wants to share what is good in football. However, the
advice to them is to try and give the people entrusted to do what they can while in office.
JT: Looking at your football career which player was your favourite and who was your
best coach? What do you regret most having played football in Namibia?
WC: My best players outside of Namibia were Ronaldinho, a great player with skill, power, speed, free scorer and smiles every
time. In Namibia it was Congo Hindjou, such a great player, his passing capability was superb on scoring opportunities – a true maestro
of the ball. I have been coached by many different coaches, I didn’t stay for two seasons with same coach. I think Ali Khan was one of the good coaches, though I didn’t win a league with him. I have no regrets about playing my football in Namibia.
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