‘Ntseki has to produce quickly as Kaizer Chiefs coach’

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Former Bafana Bafana and Kaizer Chiefs midfielder Linda Buthelezi says he is fully behind the appointment of Molefi Ntseki as the new head coach of Amakhosi. Buthelezi says Ntseki has the technical ability required to lead South Africa’s biggest football club.

Ntseki was unveiled as Amakhosi coach on Wednesday, replacing Arthur Zwane.

The 53-year-old replaces Zwane with immediate effect. The Free State-born coach joined Chiefs as Head of Technical and the Youth Development Academy in May 2021.

This came after his sacking as Bafana Bafana coach. Ntseki has never coached at the professional level in South Africa’s top-flight football. But he has coached various national youth teams in the country.

“This is the greatest move they have made. I’m very happy that Kaizer Motaung actually came up with this kind of decision. Ntseki has been with the kids, the youth in particular, a teacher by profession, that means this person has knowledge as far as kids are concerned and sports, in particular, he has done so well. He has been appointed for the national team and that shows that this person has the ability. And I believe that if he can win the change room Kaizer Chiefs will be on top again.”

Frustrated fans 

Buthelezi has appealed for calm from the hard-to-please Amakhosi fans. Chiefs fans have grown impatient because the club has not won a major trophy in the past eight years.

“Coaching Kaizer Chiefs, it has always been a hot seat , if you go there you obviously have a strong mind, strong responsibility that you need to take and I’m glad because Ntseki has support with that team. Now remember that he knows what to do with the youth and I believe that if it can happen for him to take out all the old players, he can win many games and he can take the league. We just have to support him”.

Buthelezi’s sentiments were echoed by SABC Sport football commentator Michael Abrahamson. Abrahamson says Ntseki’s coaching credentials will be judged after the first few matches of the season.

“We thought that it would be an interesting appointment and this certainly came out of left field, I think as far as I’m concerned he needs to be given a chance but I know Chiefs fans are getting a little bit frustrated, no trophies in eight years so it’s been a long time coming and he has to produce. There’s no doubt he has to produce quickly because if he doesn’t the fans are really going to get on his back. But if results are not forthcoming early it’s going to be tough.”

And Ntseki will need nerves of steel to deal with the demanding fans.

“But I think from a South African point of view, South African football needs Chiefs to be strong. I think we need a strong Chiefs to compete with Pirates and Sundowns and to have seen what we have seen in the past few years it’s not acceptable as far as Chiefs fans and people are concerned, so I just hope that it’s the right appointment but no doubt the results will tell.”

 Mixed reaction to the appointment 

But football fans hold a different view and say Ntseki will be out of his depth at Chiefs.

“First of all I’m not a Khosi fan but I think it’s a good move for Kaizer Chiefs, we have seen Arthur Zwane was not doing great.”

Zwane, together with his former assistant coach, Dillon Sheppard, will now serve as Ntseki’s assistants. The club’s management has vowed to be fully behind Ntseki as the team attempts to return to its glory days.