AS Kigali part ways with Nshimiyimana

Eric Nshimiyimana, 46, has been shown the exit door by AS Kigali after a four-year trophy drought. Sam Ngendahimana

AZAM Rwanda Premier League side AS Kigali have parted ways with head coach Eric Nshimiyimana on mutual agreement, bringing to an end his four-year stint with the yellow and green outfit.

The former midfielder had joined AS Kigali in 2014 following the departure of Andre Casa Mbungo who left the City of Kigali-sponsored side for, Police FC.

Despite huge sums of money spent in acquiring new players over the last five years, the Nyamirambo-based side have done little to disrupt APR and Rayon Sports’ dominance.

It is reported that Nshimiyimana summoned AS Kigali players after Wednesday afternoon’s training session at Kigali Stadium and told them it was their last training with him in charge.

While it is still unclear where the former Amavubi star will head next, former APR defender Ismail ‘Kodo’ Nshutinamagara and Jean de Dieu Mateso have taken over in interim roles until a new coach is determined.

One of the club’s top officials who agreed to talk to Times Sport on condition of anonymity, said that the decision was a shock to the players but the departure had been discussed between the club management and the coach.

“Before terminating his contract, the management committee sat with Eric and brought to his attention the fact that he had failed to accomplish his tasks and the club was running out of patience,” the official told this publication on Thursday.

He added: “We want to give a chance to another coach. For so long, we have relied on him but he failed to guide us to any major success, yet we believe there are other coaches who can do a better job.”

“We have been patient enough, it was about time we parted company. We want to have a team that can win trophies, and that is not a lot to ask for a side that has invested heavily in recruiting some of the best players in the country over the last few years,” the source added.

Times Sportstried, repeatedly, to reach Nshimiyimana on his known telephone line for a comment but the 46-year-old did not respond to any of our calls. This newspaper also tried to reach AS Kigali’s vice chairman, Charles Havuguziga, on multiple occasions for a comment but all the efforts were in vain as he didn’t pick up the calls.

According to reports, Nshimiyimana’s contract with AS Kigali had ended in July and was hoping for a renewal like it was previously extended in 2016 when his first two-year deal expired.

Born on May 8, 1972 in Bujumbura, Nshimiyimana, played for Burundi’s Prince Louis Rwagasore FC before coming to Rwanda after the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi where he featured for APR FC and Kiyovu SC until his retirement in 2005.

He was part of the national team (Amavubi) that participated at the 2004 African Cup of Nations (AFCON) finals tournament in Tunisia.