BULAWAYO – Zimbabwe football legend Rahman Allen Thuthani Gumbo has died at the age of 59.
The former Highlanders striker collapsed suddenly at his home in the Botswana town of Palapye on Thursday and was admitted at a hospital in Francistown where he died on Friday night.
His wife and son were with him.Gumbo was sacked as coach of Morupule Wanderers on Tuesday after a slow start to the season in which they have drawn three and lost three of their first six matches.
Zacharia Muzadzi, who was Gumbo’s assistant at Wanderers, was also present when he breathed his last, eight days shy of his 60th birthday.
“I am shattered,” Muzadzi told The Chronicle.
In a statement, the Botswana Premier League said: “We are saddened by the passing of former Morupule Wanderers, Sua Flamingoes, Gaborone United and Township Rollers head coach Rahman Gumbo.
On behalf of the extended family of all member clubs, we convey our heartfelt and deepest sympathy to Gumbo’s family.”
As a player, Gumbo was famous for goals scored from long range.
He wore the Highlanders black and white in the 1980s and 1990s during which time he was called up to the national team.
In retirement, Gumbo took up coaching and achieved success in Zimbabwe, Malawi and Botswana.
He also had three stints as coach of the Zimbabwe national team.Gumbo won back-to-back league titles with Highlanders in 1999 and 2000.
He also clinched the championship in Malawi as coach of MTN Wanderers and in Botswana where he steered Township Rollers to league and cup glory.
Other notable clubs coached by Gumbo include FC Platinum, Chicken Inn, Witbank Aces in South Africa, CAPS United and Tel One.
Born in Bulawayo on November 18, 1963, Rahman was the most famous from a footballing family in Njube.
His two brothers, Nkosana who played for Zimbabwe Saints and AmaZulu and Norman, who ran out for Zimbabwe Saints, are lesser known siblings. ZimLive
Football ran in the veins of the Gumbo family with almost seven traceable decades of involvement in the game beginning with their father and two elder brothers, Jimmy (Bulawayo Wanderers) and Charles (Njube United).