Kaizer Chiefs head coach Steve Komphela has recorded yet another disappointing year with Amakhosi . . .
For only the fourth time since the Premier Soccer League (PSL) was founded decades ago, Chiefs under Komphela will finish the calendar year without any silverware – again.
Chiefs’ elimination in the Telkom Knockout quarterfinal by Free State Stars on Sunday has set in stone a bad record in Komphela’s career. He is one of only a few Amakhosi coaches who have ended a calendar year without a trophy.
Furthermore, the Soweto giants also finished the 2015-16 campaign without any silverware, despite being in two cup finals – losing 1-0 to Ajax Cape Town in the MTN8 and getting hammered 3-1 by Mamelodi Sundowns in the Telkom Knockout in December last year.
Excluding the Carling Black Label Champion Cup, since it is a friendly and does not count as part of official achievements, Chiefs last won something major in 2014 when they bagged the MTN8 and the league title in the 2014-15 season.
Before the Komphela drought, only on two other occasions have Amakhosi finished a season without a trophy – in 2002 under Ernst Middendorp and in 2012 under Vladimir Vermezovic.
Komphela said after the FS Stars clash at Moses Mabhida Stadium that the 6-5 defeat on penalties (following a 2-2 draw after 120 minutes) had put a lot of strain on him.
He said: “Last season we played in two cup finals and it was not enough, because we didn’t win. At a big club like this you’ve got to try and win everything. There are no excuses! This defeat puts unwanted pressure on everyone.”
Chiefs came back from behind twice to force the match into penalties. Bokang Tlhone put Ea Lla Koto in front early, before Edmond Chirambadare equalised.
In extra time, Thokozani Sekotlong gave Stars the lead but Eric Mathoho’s glancing header took the game to dreaded penalties, where William Twala’s kick was stopped by Thela Ngobeni to take Stars into the TKO semis.
Komphela was happy with the fighting spirit his players showed and the goals they scored, but was disappointed by the outcome. “With all due respect to Stars, I think we should have won the game in 90 minutes,” he said. “We created enough chances to finish the match in the first half.
“But I must compliment their goalkeeper, who stood between us and converting those chances.
“Lately I’ve been complaining about a goal drought. In this match we managed to score but we also conceded. We scored two beautiful goals – I’m sad that we didn’t win the match. I must say Stars also put up a good fight.”