Kaizer Motaung and Irvin Khoza have leapt to the defence of their embattled coaches Steve Komphela and Eric Tinkler, ahead of Saturday’s Soweto derby.
Kaizer Chiefs’ defeat to Platinum Stars on Sunday was another huge blow in Amakhosi’s bid to retain their Absa Premiership title, with Komphela’s side now eight points behind leaders Mamelodi Sundowns.
Chiefs have struggled to find fluency all season under their new coach – though they reached the final of both the MTN8 and the Telkom Knockout, they lost both.
Tinkler’s Pirates, meanwhile, reached the Caf Confederation Cup final, but also lost that, and have been in woeful form domestically, a loss to Jomo Cosmos on Saturday keeping them in a lowly 11th place on the log.
Fans have been venting their frustrations, calling for Komphela and Tinkler to be dismissed.
“I don’t think we are supposed to react to any situation that happens now,” said Motaung.
“If we do that it means we don’t know what we are doing. Just to give an example, Pitso Mosimane, two or three months ago was perceived by some Sundowns supporters as useless for the team. Where is he today?
“We understand it is an emotive game and people get impatient sometimes. (But) Even when we brought Stuart (Baxter) here for the first time we were under a lot of pressure and people were saying ‘why bring this guy’?
“After we lost our first game to Sundowns it was even worse … it is not wise to react on the basis of what people are saying.”
Khoza was also reluctant to blame Tinkler for Bucs’ problems, pointing to fatigue from their travails in Africa and injuries.
“It is remarkable what the team has done with the performance since 2010, we have been to almost all the finals,” said Khoza.
“We have had a lot of injuries in key positions, and that destabilises the team … the team has also been travelling a lot (in Africa), and this is the first time we have had a slump. In three years we have been to two (Caf) finals … it is important to remain rational and give support to the coach … we have had a meeting with him and are showing support, not just for him, but the whole technical team.”
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