Tributes pour in for ‘adored’ Malawian coach Davie Mpesi

ripFootball has been united in grief by the death of the former Big Bullets coach Dave Mpesi with some Super League coaches expressing shock on his sudden death.

Mpesi died Wednesday in a car accident in the northern region district of Rumphi.

According to police, Mpesi was on his way to Chitipa when the car he was travelling in overturned and fell into Rukulu river after the driver failed to negotiate a bend.

The coach died at Mzuzu Central Hospital at an intensive Care Unit after some bruise on his head, ribs and a leg.  Two of his friends traveling in the same vehicle escaped unhurt.

Heart-felt Tributes poured in, with Football Association of Malawi (FAM) officials admitting they had openly sobbed at the news of his demise.

Big Bullets coach Eddie Ng’onamo told Nyasa Times that he was “devastated” with Mpesi’s death because he was one of the “model professional”; a sentiment shared by his former clubs Escom United, Civo United and Chikhwawa United.

“It’s a massive shock. We have lost a person who contributed in the development of Malawi football having coached the Under 17 and 20 national sides,” said Ng’onamo.

Blantyre United coach Elijah Kananji, who was once coached by Mpesi at Escom United described his death as a big lose to the nation.

“I was with him just last week in Chikhwawa when we went to play a friendly match with his team. He inspired me to work hard in the remaining games in the League,” said Kananji.

Kananji also revealed that Mpesi was a man behind his success because he has been advising him on other formulas to progress in his coaching career.

Civo United mentor Thom Mkorongo said the football fraternity will remember Mpesi as a brave man, who stood for justice whenever things goes wrong.

“Mpesi was a brave man, he was a straight forward man,” said Mkorongo.

Mpesi once played for Mighty Wanderers FC and the club’s chairman George Chamangwana said: “Malawi has lost a great football coach but, even more sadly, a great man. He will be missed by all.”

There was admiration and sadness expressed, too, by Ministry of Sports, Principal Secretary II Justin Saidi who said: “Davie Mpesi was a magnificent person – bright, fun and a wonderful family man.”

The sense of disbelief was even shared by players, Fischer Kondowe said he remembers Mpesi when he was mentor of Bullets reserve side which was known as ‘Banyamulenge’.

“Malawi  has lost a great football coach but, even more sadly, a great man. He will be missed by all,” Kondowe said.

Mpesi, a father of six, was believed to be 57 and came from Mazale Village, T/A Kapeni, Blantyre.

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