Kaizer Chiefs sack head coach Molefi Ntseki, Cavin Johnson to take over the reins
Molefi Ntseki has been fired by Kaizer Chiefs as their head coach. Former Al Ahly assistant coach Cavin Johnson will take over the reins on an interim basis.
South African soccer heavyweights of yesteryear, Kaizer Chiefs, have parted ways with head coach Molefi Ntseki just months after he was appointed and charged with the responsibility of ending the club’s nearly decade-long trophy drought.
A Chiefs statement said that the two parties had “amicably” agreed to part ways.
“I would like to thank coach Ntseki for his contribution to the club since he arrived here, both at the development level and with the senior team. We wish him success in his future endeavours,” said Chiefs sporting director, Kaizer Motaung Jnr.
The former Bafana Bafana coach joined the struggling Soweto side in June 2023. Before that, he had been Amakhosi’s head of technical and youth development.
His departure became increasingly likely when Amakhosi’s supporters began pelting him with projectiles after a series of disappointing results.
After Chiefs let slip another opportunity to clinch silverware for the first time since 2015 – in the form of the Carling Knockout Cup – the fans unleashed their frustrations on Ntseki.
The Glamour Boys lost 1-0 to AmaZulu in the first round of the newly formed cup competition. It was a follow-up to when they were ousted by Mamelodi Sundowns in the MTN8 semifinals.
In the DStv Premiership, the results were a roller coaster of note. Under Ntseki, Chiefs played nine league matches. Of those, three ended in victory. There were a couple of draws, but they suffered four defeats – the most recent coming before the Fifa international break, where they were downed 1-0 by Cape Town City, leaving them eighth on the log.
Ntseki becomes the latest coach to fail in an attempt to bring the glory days back to Naturena.
He joins a long list of mentors who have come and gone without delivering the desired results to a club that is historically one of the most successful on the African continent.
These include Steve Komphela, Giovanni Solinas, Ernst Middendorp, Gavin Hunt and Arthur Zwane. Even the rehiring of the last tactician to bring happiness to Amakhosi eight years ago – Stuart Baxter – did not yield the silverware that would snap the barren run.
Cavin Johnson, who recently joined Chiefs as head of the club’s youth development academy, will take over as the first team coach on an interim basis. The current assistant coach, Dillon Sheppard, will retain his position under Johnson.
The club’s other assistant coach, Arthur Zwane, will return to his former role within the development structures of the club.
When Ntseki was appointed as head coach and handed this mammoth responsibility, questions were asked about whether he was the right man for the job – especially considering his lack of experience with coaching at a senior club level.
Before taking up his previous role in Naturena, Ntseki was at the helm as head coach when Bafana Bafana failed to qualify for the most recent edition of the Africa Cup of Nations in Cameroon.
Before that, he worked as assistant to former Chiefs coach Stuart Baxter, while the latter was Bafana Bafana’s boss. He climbed his way to that role after having been an assistant in the under-20 and under-23 teams. He was also the head coach of Amajimbos – South Africa’s under-17 team. DM