By Dom Agbakpe,
Being one of the most experienced Ghana Football coaches, David Duncan is now the assistant coach of the Senior National Men’s football team, Black Stars.
The 56-year-old has managed several football clubs, Great Olympics, Sekondi Hasaacas, Freestates Stars in South Africa (Briefly), Ashanti Gold (Twice), Hearts of Oak and Asante Kotoko.
Duncan won trophies at Ashanti Gold, Hearts of Oak and Asante Kotoko – Macufe Cup in 2006, GHALCA President Cup in 2013 and SWAG Cup 2015.
The experienced coach offered soka25east.com an exclusive interview where he shared with us some of his extensive knowledge.
Q: How did your path into professional coaching begin and what were the main difficulties that you faced?
A: “Four (4) years after my playing career that ended with Great Olympics, i undertook courses from the Preliminary to the advanced level in football coaching at winneba.”
“Did not seem to have had any difficulty because not long after completing the course, Olympics came calling. And that was in the 2001/2002 season.”
“I gladly embraced the challenge and that set me up beautifully for greater things thereafter.”
Q: What were some of the teams you played for locally and internationally?
A: “Afienya United: 90/91 and Great Olympics: 91/92-95/96, i went on an unsuccessful trial with German second tier side Rot-Weiss Essen after my first season with Olympics.”
Q: Your role model (coach) and why?
A: The Late Jones Attuquayefio For:
1. His unalloyed passion for the game.
2. Deep understanding of all the intricacies of the game; i.e. Technically, Tactically, exhibition of intuitive football intelligence and knowledge.
3. Genuinely attempts to lift his colleagues in the industry up unlike some others. Football comes to him naturally.
Q: What are the main differences between coaching National teams and coaching clubs?
A: “A lot. The striking one is the fact that with club sides you have ample time to disseminate your ideas etc into the team.
Whilst with national teams there is very little time for that. And this has the potential of affecting the general performance of the team even though it may comprise of the best materials available to the nation.”
Q: Do former professional players have the greater advantage of making it as pro coaches?
A: “I think they do, but it must be driven by passion like what I told you about Jones Attuquayefio who played for Olympics.”
“On the other hand the likes of Arday, Afranie, Osam Duodu never played football to any appreciable level, but turned out as accomplished coaches too.”
Q: You are now the assistant coach of the Senior National Men’s Football team, the Black Stars, what does this job represent to you?
A: “Service to The Nation through Football.”
Q: Your brightest and darkest moments as a coach?
A: “I have had quite a couple of both depending on the outcome of games. There are hardly particular ones of both.”
Q: What do you do in your spare time?
A: “Read variety of materials; especially on football. Watch football games especially European on DSTV. And prepare sermons to preach mostly at least once in a month at my church.”
Q: Who is your all-time model player?
A: My all-time model player in Ghana was/is Sampson Lamptey a.k.a Captain Nada aka Gaddafi. Ex Gihoc Stars/ Hearts of Oak/Kotoko.
Q: What words of advice would you offer to a grassroot youth coach?
A: “If that is where they find themselves now; they should give it their best shot.”
“They may be working in obscurity now; but their sacrifices wholly offered will open a great door of a breakthrough for them at the right time.
Q: And finally your thoughts on the coronavirus crisis?
A: “Let’s save ourselves by complying with those instructions given today, so we can see ourselves again when it’s all over; which we hope will be very soon.”