Komphela explains Chiefs, Celtic differences


Komphela was on Monday morning honoured with the Absa Coach of the Month award for his side’s sterling display in August, winning three of their four league matches despite plenty of uncertainty around the club’s future at the start of the season.

Yet, in his spell of 34 months at Amakhosi, which came to an abrupt end in April, the former junior national team mentor failed to land a seat at the high table at the Premier Soccer League’s headquarters.

Many have questioned whether ‘Bra Steve’ was the problem at Naturena, or whether it was other underlying factors that hampered his impact on the pitch.

However, Komphela has highlighted the different stages his Siwelele outfit are currently in as the essential factor in their heightened performances this term.

“Environments and stages of projects differ [between the current and previous clubs]… Bloemfontein Celtic have got good players, make no mistake,” said Komphela.

“The starting XI is very strong; the seven on the bench in very strong; the ones in Bloemfontein are very strong. We travelled with 22 players to Thohoyandou, and had to leave out four – of those we had to ask ourselves, ‘Goodness me, Jacky Motshegwa, [Roggert] Nyundu, [Vusi] Shikweni – who do you leave out? Those are all good players.’

“I’m not saying there were no good players in my previous environment [at Chiefs], but I’m saying [it is] the stage of the project at Celtic – this team played in the Telkom Knockout final last season, if I’m not mistaken.

“That tells you that this is a team [where] the project was ready to yield results. Maybe things that we needed to add is the mindset and clarity – when you are clear in your mind your steps are firmer, but if not then your steps will never be firm.

“Reaffirmation comes from highlighting the strengths in an individual, and also trying to eliminate the weaknesses that are likely to give shortfalls in the team.”

In the same breath, Komphela also rued his failure to appease the Chiefs supporters, and says of his own personal desire for success that self-assurance has led to him rising from his shortcomings in the past three years.

“Sometimes you don’t get what you want at the time you wish, but it is the level of calmness and composure as well as understanding of what you want to achieve, irrespective of the timeline,” he added.

“So you keep your eyes on the project and you keep your eyes on the process, because sometimes you focus more on the outcome and neglect the process. There shall never be outcome without process.”