JOHANNESBURG - Siviwe ‘Chippa’ Mpengesi, the trigger-happy owner of Chippa United, could learn from Kaizer Motaung, his Kaizer Chiefs counterpart.
Last week, at a time when hearing that Amakhosi coach Giovanni Solinas had either been fired or given an ultimatum of two matches would have pleased the club supporters, the Chiefs chairman called for calm.
He pointed out that the Italian never really had a pre-season, and should be given time. Mpengesi has no time for such. He has already fired Dan Malesela - after just three matches. Mpengesi has sent 16 coaches packing in the last six years.
Motaung is on his third coach in the same period. What is his logic? The 73-year-old believes in giving coaches a fair shake, sometimes even to the team’s detriment. Remember Ernst Middendorp?
Solinas has brought back memories of his fumbling German equal, who was retained until he clinched a trophy. But he had dismantled a side that had managed back-to-back league titles by then.
There are a few skeptics who are adamant that Solinas is headed in that direction. The former Free State Stars coach is yet to win a league match in five outings. His only wins have come in the MTN8, but even then Chiefs couldn’t get to the final.
When reporters ambushed Motaung at a board of governors meeting last Thursday, the man nicknamed ‘Chincha Guluva’ acknowledged that Chiefs have had a false start, but only called the lack of victories ‘glitches’. He praised Solinas’ work ethic and insisted that when the team eventually clicks the Amakhosi supporters will see why the coach was given the job.
DONE DEAL!!! Welcome to the Chilli Boys family Coach🌶🌶🌶 pic.twitter.com/1bfJpbQ2z7
Mpengesi would laugh off this sober assessment of any new coach. His sacking of Malesela wasn’t a first. Mpengesi once fired Manqoba Mngqithi, now Mamelodi Sundowns assistant coach, after two matches in 2012. It’s a mystery how he concluded that Mnqgithi wasn’t suitable after two games, just as it’s puzzling now why he terminated Malesela’s contract so early.
It’s maybe worth a trip to Naturena for Mpengesi to change his attitude. It’s been reported he is surrounded by lackeys who give him poor advice. He is probably already wielding the axe in front of Eric Tinkler, who lost his first match in charge before the Fifa break. Tinkler knows he is a dead man walking.