Kaizer Chiefs coach Steve Komphela knows his team need to end the season with at least one trophy. Photo: Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix
A sense of disappointment envelopes Steve Komphela when he looks back at the 100 matches he managed at Kaizer Chiefs, arguing that he is unfortunate not to have given South Africa’s cup kings a trophy in his almost three-season stay.

Komphela had a tough act to follow, taking over a team that had won the league in record style.

He inherited a team that was in a transition with, certain senior players being phased out and a number of players who starred in that campaign unsettled before some moved to greener pastures.

Despite that rocky start Komphela managed to reach two cup finals in his first season, something that would be an achievement in many clubs but not Amakhosi.

The Premiership and the Nedbank Cup are the coach’s last shots of ensuring that Chiefs don’t finish three seasons without a title.

“If these two trophies are the opportunity to end the drought so be it. How long can we wait? Not for me but for the supporters. Go back and check, the Telkom Knockout final against Sundowns in Durban we were unlucky,” Komphela said.

“It doesn’t happen that you get two penalties and three one-on-one opportunities and you come out with nothing.

“And then we go to Eastern Cape against Ajax in the MTN8 final, a penalty and they score. Look at the Telkom Knockout semi-final against Wits. We were unlucky to lose all those matches but the records don’t show that.

“Now we have to go for this one (Nedbank Cup). You go for this one like any other match with the ambition to win but you don’t have at the back of your mind the thought that it won’t happen.

“We are not half-hearted. We go into it fully focused. Chiefs have won many things in the past. It’s going to happen again.”

Amakhosi will start their Nedbank Cup campaign next month against Golden Arrows.

Chiefs’ immediate challenge is continuing their good run in the league in their visit to Baroka FC at Peter Mokaba Stadium on Sunday afternoon.

The Soweto giants defeated Bakgaga’s neighbours Polokwane City in their last match to collect 10 points out of 12 in their last four matches.

This good run has injected a positive spirit to all those associated with Amakhosi.

“Victory is something else,” Komphela said.

“Wins will always ignite and inspire people. But the beauty of it is that when our people are happy, they give us that positive energy and we perform well and win, by winning we give them that positive energy.

“It becomes the issue of the chicken and the egg, which one came first? Should we perform well so that they are happy or should they give us energy for us to perform?

“It’s good that we are performing well and they are supporting us and we are in a good space. We can’t let go of that energy. We have to maintain that good energy because I think we have found an environment where both the players and our supporters meet and enjoy.”

But all of this will amount to nothing if Chiefs don’t finish this season without a trophy. Two seasons without any silverware is an anomaly and three seasons would be a disaster.

“My take is that it would be nice for me (to win a trophy), but we are here for the club,” Komphela said.

“We are desperately doing things for the club. It would be nice that Chiefs gets something because there is a lot at stake, there is a lot of pride.

“When other teams win, their supporters rejoice. Our supporters deserve that as well.

“With regards to myself, I don’t want to lie to you, I am a man who accepts and I am a man of process. When God says, ‘yes it’s time for you to get’, I will receive. And when he says, ‘no, no, no, wait again’. Listen man, I will wait again. He’s got the best timing and He’s never too early nor too late.”

Sunday Independent

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