Mwaruwari sharpening coaching skills at Plymouth Argyle

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MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - MARCH 06: Former Manchester City Player Benjani Mwaruwari looks on during the Premier League match between Manchester City and Manchester United at Etihad Stadium on March 06, 2022 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Tom Flathers/Manchester City FC via Getty Images)

Former Zimbabwe captain Benjani Mwaruwari has been enhancing his coaching skills in England after recently joining the Plymouth Argyle Academy as part of the Premier League’s player-to-coach initiative.

Currently based in the UK, the 45-year-old ex-Manchester City and Portsmouth striker, who also played for top clubs in Switzerland and France before moving to England was recently unveiled at the youth side of EFL Championship outfit Plymouth Argyle.

Mwaruwari said he has been attached at Argyle after being recommended by the Premier League as part of their initiative to assist former players who want to excel as coaches.

“I’ve been involved with the Premier League player to coach scheme which looks after the former players who are interested in coaching, so I’m here trying to appraise my coaching skills,” Mwaruwari said.

The Professional Player to Coach Scheme is a joint programme from the PFA, the Premier League and the EFL, designed to increase the number of Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic players who transition into full-time coaching roles in the professional game.

The scheme provides up to six coaches per season with a 23-month intensive work placement at an EFL club, within the Academy or First Team environment.

Each coach works through an individualised learning and development programme during their placement, incorporating a variety of football functions. This usually includes physical performance and conditioning, recruitment, analysis, administration and coaching different age groups.

Participants also receive mentoring from PFA Coach Educators, who have extensive experience developing coaches within a club environment. Members of the Premier League’s Black Participants’ Advisory Group also support the players and clubs involved in the programme.

Mwaruwari got his first high-profile coaching job in Zimbabwe’s top flight league two years ago after being appointed head coach at ambitious Ngezi Platinum Stars but lasted just four months.

The former Zimbabwe international has been working on getting his UEFA Pro Licence coaching badge.

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