JOHANNESBURG - Embattled Kaizer Chiefs coach Steve Komphela described himself as an elephant, silent yet powerful. This was in response to criticism that he is soft on the underperforming Amakhosi players.
Komphela, has consistently refused to criticise his players in the media even when they were losing concentration in key moments to slip up in the final stretch of the Absa Premiership race.
Even when the club’s fans, who have been spoiled with success, have called for his axe - Komphela has chosen to stand alone in the firing line to protect his players.
This has created an impression that he is weak, struggling to deal with the pressure that comes from managing the most successful club in domestic competitions in the country.
“There are different ways to look at power,” Komphela said.
“There is silent power, there’s soft power and there’s loud and aggressive power. We are different. It’s just that people who haven’t been with us don’t understand the exact levels of the power that we have and how we use it.
“When they are outside looking at us, maybe they think that there is lack thereof. However, if you want to show your power, sometimes it comes across as destructive. You could still be powerful but silent like an elephant. Sometimes you don’t have to show your power.
“I strongly believe that people need to be respected. Sometimes when you show too much power, you pulverise and kill others. You still need to have your power but you push your power properly.”
Amakhosi start their league campaign against Bloemfontein Celtic at Free State Stadium on Sunday afternoon looking to end a two-season barren run.
Attempts to remedy what is unheard off at Chiefs started on a shaky start after the club was knocked out of the MTN8 by SuperSport United. Chiefs controlled that match but didn’t put the ball at the back of the net, hitting the post three times.
Komphela argued that they were unlucky and perhaps they needed to kneel down and pray to improve their fortunes.
But don’t expect him to change his managerial style and wield his power in order to put Chiefs’ players in line.
“It’s not about me,” Komphela said. “Sometimes your lessons don’t come immediately today. Sometimes your lessons can come 10 years after you have had an encounter with a person.
“That as well still remains a lesson. Those who are not scared of who they are, are not going to be desperate to show their power just to protect themselves.
“If you are a man who knows exactly what you are trying to plant, it might not be a seed that you will benefit from but it will benefit somebody, you don’t have to be aggressive to want to benefit. If it means somebody benefits after my departure, so be it. But power was still there.
“There’s one thing about me, you will never question order, discipline and being professional (in a club I am in charge of). Sometimes power possessed and abused isn’t right. But power possessed and properly used is proper.”
Chiefs will be without George Lebese, who joined Mamelodi Sundowns after stressing that he was tired of sitting on the bench and just wanted to play regardless of which jersey he is wearing.
Amakhosi will not replace Lebese as Komphela feels they have enough cover in his position on the wing.
What Komphela would like the club to get before the transfer window closes on August 31st is a striker.
“Our only challenge at the moment is to get somebody who can score goals consistently,” he said.