‘I like to see Ethiopia compete in African cup competitions’
The Reporter: Tell us briefly about your career as a footballer
Yohannes Sahile: Well, I started playing football at a club level, with a youth club known as Anbessa Club. That is where I started and then I transferred to another club called Ras Hotel. It was from there, that I was selected to play for the national team. And then from there, I joined St. George FC. I played there for two years. I was also a part of the national team in 1986.
You left for the US afterwards. What happened then?
After I left for the US in 1986 I went to study at the University of Connecticut in New Haven. I received my bachelor’s degree in communication after four years study. When I played there I was twice voted MVP (Most Valuable Player) and in my conference I was player of the year. Then, I stayed there to do my masters. I did my masters in Sports Leadership. And in 1994, I got my first job as head coach in first division college at Alabama A & M University. I coached there for about four years. At the time, there were around nine players who were recruited from Ethiopia playing for that collage. Almost all of them, before they went to play in the US, were Ethiopian national team players. They were in my team in 1994-95. Then I went on to become a technical director. Which means I started coaching not just teams but also coaches.
After I left Alabama around 1998-99 I was selected to coach Olympic development team for European tour (which they call it Bavarian Cup) and that was in Germany. Eventually, I joined a sports academy opened in Ohio by Brad Friedel, the Tottenham Hotspur goalkeeper, as a senior coach. In the academy we bring players from all over the world. We bring young active players who are 16 and 17. We train them and then we sell them [in players transfer market]. I was the only African guy working as a senior coach.
Source: The Reporter