PSL clubs continue to hire and fire coaches
Posted: 25 October 2012 Time: 2:48 pm
It appears PSL clubs have not outgrown their 'hire-and-fire' culture, with four coaches fired just seven games into the season.
Maarten Stekelenburg (Ajax Cape Town), Manqoba Mngqithi (Chippa United), Augusto Palacios (Orlando Pirates) and Muhsin Ertugral (Lamontville Golden Arrows) have parted ways with their clubs this season.
Pirates claimed they let Palacios "go back to development" because of ill-health, but word was that the Peruvian would have been out anyway. after a run of mediocre form.
Ajax caretaker coach Jan Pruijn is also reportedly on his way out. He was linked to the Arrows job, before Mngqithi was hired, while Jan Versleijen is reportedly close to joining the Urban Warriors.
Chippa let Roger Sikhakhane go at the end of last season, because of what the club termed "personal problems", only to hire him back in September after firing Mngqithi.
And Sunday Chidzambga is waiting to hear whether the life ban he received in the Asiagate scandal will hold for the South African League.
The likes of AmaZulu and Mamelodi Sundowns have shown new-found restraint though, allowing Roger Palmgren and Johan Neeskens to work themselves out of a run of poor results, when in years gone by they would almost certainly have been fired by now.
There were 11 coaching changes in the top-flight during the 2011/12 season, at nine clubs.
The golden season for coaches was the 2008/09 campaign when just four clubs changed their tactician (not including caretaker bosses) – Sundowns offloading Henri Michel, Bay United getting rid of Vladislav Veric, Bloemfontein Celtic replacing Mich d'Avray with Owen da Gama and Free State Stars bringing in Steve Komphela in the place of Da Gama.
In 2007/08, seven clubs made coaching changes, while in 2006/07 a total of nine clubs shuffled their coaching deck.
But it was even worse in the season before that, with 15 changes (2005/06), 20 (2004/05) and 22 in 2003/04.
In fact, coaches used to be spat out with astonishing regularly.
In back-to-back seasons, Black Leopards made 10 changes; five in each campaign.
In the 2006/07 season, they employed Bibey Mutombo, then Mlungisi Ngubane, Selokela Matloga as caretaker, Hans-Dieter Schmidt and Boebie Solomons. Then the next season Solomons started the campaign, only to be replaced by Joel Masutha, then the Nigerian World Cup star Augustin Eguavoen (who stayed less a month), Sheppard Murape and Masutha again, by which time the Thohoyandou team were understandably relegated.
But even worse were Manning Rangers – in their last season in the top-flight (2004/05) they used six different coaches, including former Bafana Bafana bosses Clive Barker and Ephraim 'Shakes' Mashaba.
Zulu Royals (now again known as AmaZulu) also had six coaches when they were relegated at the end of the 2003/04 season.