Doc Khumalo interested in Chiefs job

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Doc_Khumalo Gallo Images Kaizer Chiefs caretaker coach Doctor Khumalo.

Former Kaizer Chiefs player Doctor Khumalo is interested in taking up the vacant coaching duties at the club from next season.

“If given an opportunity, I don't think it will be a problem,” Khumalo said on Wednesday.

Khumalo, a former Bafana Bafana player who is hailed as one of the country's greatest, has previously been in charge of the Chiefs youth set up.

“This is what I wanted to do and went to (coaching) school for, but if there is another local coach then I will support him,” he said.

Khumalo and another former player, Donald “Ace” Khuse, took over on a caretaker basis until the end of the season after Chiefs parted ways with Serb Vladimir Vermezovic earlier this month.

The duo, however, have started their reign on the back foot, losing all three matches in charge thus far.

Chiefs face a rare trophy-less season, having been eliminated early in all three cup competitions.

They are a distant sixth in the Premiership race with five games left in the season.

“It's unfortunate that we going through a phase and a transition period,” Khumalo said.

“I strongly believe that we will fight until it's over.

“Chiefs supporters want to see success because they are used to that.”

Khumalo would not confirm whether his or Khuse's CV's had been submitted to club management, who reportedly want to name the new man next month.

“Check with me in three weeks' time,” Khumalo said.

Chiefs executive chairman Kaizer Motaung Senior had previously said there was no local coach that could lead the glamour side.

Ironically, Amakhosi's last league success came under naturalised South African Ted Dumitru who led them to back-to-back crowns in the 2003/04 and 2004/05 seasons.

Previously, Englishman Jeff Butler had been in the country for close to a decade, guiding Chiefs to successive titles in 1991 and 1992 and the 'mini-league' in 1996 that had preceded the Premier Soccer League era.

Butler is said to be one of the coaches that have expressed an interest in the vacant post, along with fellow Englishman and former Bafana coach Stuart Baxter.

Chiefs captain Itumeleng Khune supported the possibility of Khumalo or Khuse taking over full time, while subtly jabbing the European philosophical style that has restricted their freedom of play.

“What was previously lacking (in the team ) was African flair since European coaches prefer a 'straight' system,” Khune said.

“They (Khumalo and Khuse) have instilled a lot of confidence in this team and I believe that we are playing carpet football.

“They have told us what to do, and what we have got to do to get the supporters behind us.”

Khune predicted that Chiefs would recover from their slump in a crunch league meeting with fellow title challengers SuperSport United at FNB Stadium on Saturday.

A defeat to United will diminish Chiefs' chances before their next fixture against second-placed Mamelodi Sundowns.

“I believe we can turn the corner,” Khune said.

“We need to take it a game at a time and people will start believing in us.”

Meanwhile, the side welcomed back midfielder Reneilwe Letsholonyane from a long-term knee injury, and he may be available for the Sundowns game.

Midfielder Siphiwe Tshabalala and striker Lehlohonolo Majoro did not train on Wednesday because of niggles, but they were expected to recover ahead of the weekend clash. – Sapa


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