Downs fire Igesund

2008-02-26 00:00

GORDON Igesund would prefer to savour the highlights of his time coaching the country’s most expensive club football team, Mamelodi Sundowns, than dwell on the disappointments of the past few months, the coach says.

Igesund and Sundowns agreed to part ways on Sunday night after the team’s 3-2 defeat against Wits University saw the Brazilians drop to 12th place in the Premier Soccer League.

This was the latest in a string of mediocre results for Downs, including a 3-1 defeat against Orlando Pirates in their previous match, and even last season’s league trophy could not save under-pressure Igesund. That title was the fourth at four different clubs for the PSL’s joint most successful coach with Ted Dumitru.

Speculation has been that Kaizer Chiefs coach Muhsin Ertugral, whose team are in 10th place and have not won in six games, might go next.

Igesund, who has described leaving Downs as “par for the course in the exacting profession I have chosen”, told The Witness yesterday he intends having a break from football.

“At this stage, I think I just need to relax and take some time out of football. I’ve been under huge pressure for the last 10 months, and in 18 months I have barely had a day off,” the coach explained.

Igesund said there had been many moments to savour coaching SA’s most star-studded team. Apart from the league, Sundowns this season also won the SAA Supa 8 trophy, beating Orlando Pirates in the final, and lost in the Telkom Knockout final to Kaizer Chiefs. Downs reached the Absa Cup final last season, losing against Ajax Cape Town.

“This has been 19 months of my life in which there have been some very special moments. You know, football has its ups and downs.

“The magic moments have been winning the league with five matches to go, reaching three cup finals, setting a South African record of 11 league games unbeaten, and eight wins in a row, and the 44 passes against Kaizer Chiefs.”

His assistant, Trott Moloto, will take over as part-time coach until the end of the season.

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