Addis Ababa – The body of Mengistu Worku, Ethiopia’s greatest footballer of all time and one of Africa’s football legends was laid to rest here today at Lebu St. Gabriel Church in the Merkanissa District of Addis Ababa.
The 70-year-old Mengistu played his entire club football career for St. George Football Club (16 years) and represented Ethiopia 115 times (1959-1974) in international matches and scored a record 68 goals.
Mengistu helped St.George win the Ethiopian Championship 3 years in a row(1966, 67 & 68), at a time where the Ethiopian Super 8 Championship, was considered one of the best leagues in Africa.
At the national level, Mengistu scored the 4th Ethiopian team’s goal in the 4-2 victory over Egypt during the 1962 African Cup in Addis Ababa. He took part in 6 African Cup (2nd to 7th) competitions, where he scored 10 goals, making him one of the best goal scorers in the history of the competition.
Following retirement, Mengistu turned to coaching. He coached St. George, EEPCO, Ethiopian Airlines, Banks, Wonji Sugar and Insurance at club level and also served the Ethiopian national team both as Assistant and Head Coach positions.
Mengistu was actually the last coach (Ethiopian or foreign) to help an Ethiopian team qualify to the African Nations Cup in Libya in 1982.
Mengistu’s coaching career was not limited to Ethiopia as he served as CAF Instructor, visiting and conducting coaching courses in numerous African countries.