With less than half of the season played, the hammer has come down on Kaizer Chiefs coach Molefi Ntseki in what could be a bold move to rescue their season.
Before Ntseki left Kaizer Chiefs, his position had become almost untenable, so much that the fans were baying for his head on a platter.
For anybody who knows anything about football, the situation at Kaizer Chiefs with Ntseki had become a case of when rather than if he would lose his job.
Ntseki had led Kaizer Chiefs from one gruelling and painful encounter to another.
The Amakhosi had become a shadow of themselves and had no answers to the numerous questions.
Ntseki had seemingly lost the fans, and there seemed no way out of the woods, so the board decided to make the decision. By mutual consent, Ntseki left Naturena without any achievement.
Club Update: Chiefs and Ntseki Part Ways
Following a meeting on Monday morning, Molefi Ntseki’s tenure as Head Coach of Kaizer Chiefs has ended amicably by mutual consent.https://t.co/ektYRGBARu
— Kaizer Chiefs (@KaizerChiefs) October 23, 2023
The mistakes that cost Ntseki his Kaizer Chiefs job
No pattern of play at Chiefs
It is hard to pinpoint what Ntseki tried to achieve with the Amakhosi. The former Bafana Bafana boss turned the Glamour Boys into a mid-table team with how his side plays.
It is an arduous mission to discern if Ntseki is an offensive or defensive coach.
The substitutions by Ntseki leave many unanswered questions, and his reading of the game is suspect.
One such mistake was in the 2-1 win over Sekhukune United.
Ntseki came under criticism after he replaced Castillo, who had just equalised when he brought on Mthethwa from the bench instead of withdrawing Maart, who had little effect in the game.
Losing to Mamelodi Sundowns
Kaizer Chiefs vs Mamelodi Sundowns is like Real Madrid vs Barcelona. It is a cardinal sin for Los Blancos to lose to Barcelona.
One can describe it as an almost unpardonable slight, but that is what Ntseki did. He lost to the Masandawana, not once, but twice this season.
The failure of Kaizer Chiefs to beat the Brazilians, even once in three encounters, added to the threat to his position.
Struggles for goals
The Amakhosi crashed out of the MTN8 and the Carling Knockout Cup and are lagging in the league, but something many fans found appalling was their struggle for goals.
Under him, the Amakhosi scored 12 goals in all competitions in 13 matches.
Perhaps this can be described as a disgrace for many. Of the 13 matches they played, they failed to score in SIX. It amounts to almost 50 per cent of their games.
Carling Knockout Cup loss
Following their loss to Mamelodi Sundowns in the MTN8, the Carling Knockout Cup became the only realistic opportunity of winning silverware this term.
Ntseki contrived to bottle it. The Amakhosi lost in a game that became the proverbial last straw for the Amakhosi management.
The loss was not just painful on its merit, but the quality of opposition made the hurt too severe to bear. The Glamour Boys lost to Amazulu FC, a team they had beaten 3-0 in the league.
There was nothing glamorous about the loss.
The way Ntseki approached games against smaller teams
Fans of Amakhosi love to see brilliant attacking football. They love the shibobos, umbane, ibanana, Thembisa, Umshesha phantsi and Ishumi.
Rather than that, Ntseki served them with undesirable dishes. He turned the Amakhosi players into Inkomos, and instead of exciting matches, he delivered Umngcwabo.
The former South Africa coach did not set his team up like a big team. They were supposed to go toe-to-toe with the likes of Orlando Pirates and Mamelodi Sundowns.
They were supposed to boss games against teams like TS Galaxy, Amazulu FC, Cape Town City FC and Royal AM.
Rather, Ntseki set up his team to play with timidity and lost to teams he had no business losing to.
He set his team up like Sheffield United at a club that feels like Real Madrid – unforgivable.
Kaizer Chiefs believed it was the right time to pull the trigger on a manager who had the complete support of the club.
The team was bolstered in all departments, with the minimum expectation to challenge on all fronts.
Perhaps it was the right thing to let the former coach leave, as his conservative style seems better suited to a smaller club rather than a Chiefs side accustomed to glamour.
Kaizer Chiefs under Ntseki
This article was most recently revised and updated 1 month ago