Kaizer Motaung, Chairman of Kaizer Chiefs, made the announcement on Wednesday morning that Steve Komphela will be the club’s new head coach, taking over from Stuart Baxter. As he addressed the press in conference, Motaung welcomed Komphela back to a club where he was both a player and assistant coach in the past.
Motaung said “I want to take this opportunity to welcome him back into the Kaizer Chiefs journey; he was here before as a player. It was here where he began his coaching career; he started here as assistant coach to Muhsin Ertugral.”
Except for Ace Khuse who was interim coach in 2012, and Doctor Khumalo and Ace Khuse who were co-coaches on an interim bases in 2002–03 season; the Glamour Boys are yet to have a South African appointed on an official bases as coach in 21 year (Trott Moloto, 1994).
In the address to the media Komphela acknowledged the success of the team from the previous season and also thanked the chairman for having a few familiar faces for him to work with going forward.
To this he was referring to his 2012 stint at the senior national as assistant and later caretaker coach, Steve Kompela would have worked with what has since become the list of senior players in Stuart Baxter’s team – Masilela, Khune, Gaxa, Tshabalala, Letsholonyane, Gould etc. Some these players would have come through his mentorship in the junior national teams. Furthermore Komphela will be also be assisted by former Chiefs and national teammate Doctor Khumalo.
In addition to the familiar personnel, in his time as assistant coach to Stuart Baxter in Bafana Bafana, Steve Kompela would have been exposed to Baxter’s philosophies, rational, playing management methods; which seem to have been implemented successfully at Naturena. Therefore it stands to reason that the appointment of Kompela at Kaizer Chiefs would have been informed more by the premise of continuity.
Komphela was previously the coach of Maritzburg United, and resigned last week Friday after leaving the KZN club with the highest finish on the PSL log in the club’s history. He now takes on a job in which he is not only charged with the responsibility of defending a record braking league title, and produce a decent Champions League performance amid tumultuous player transfer. But he also needs to manage the transition of the core of team players which is made up of players who are currently on the wrong side of thirty. His experience in the Under 20 and Under 23’s National teams will certainly come in handy as he bleeds in new players.
At the press conference Kompela said that as a local boy coming into arguably the best team in Africa, he is excited by this unique opportunity. He reiterated that he was looking forward to working in this team, smelling the grass in the black and gold training kit.
The chairman said “I am very proud to have one of us, who can be able to take this huge task of this great brand to greater heights. With the experience that he has gathered over the years, he has gone through the mill, he has paid his dues and he deserves the kind of platform we are going to afford him at Chiefs to exploit his potential.
“I would like to wish him everything of the best, maybe enjoy this journey he has just re-joined once more. There will be no further changes to the technical team, we are just plugging he gap that is there.”