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Gavin Hunt the latest coach to walk Chippa's tightrope: Will he last much longer?

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Gavin Hunt and Siviwe Mpengesi (Gallo Images)
Gavin Hunt and Siviwe Mpengesi (Gallo Images)

Chippa United head coach Gavin Hunt has stretched his winless streak with the DStv Premiership outfit to eight matches after their midweek defeat to Cape Town City.

Abdul Ajagun’s 90th-minute winner at Cape Town Stadium further dented Hunt’s chances to guide the Chilli Boys up the log standings as they occupy 14th position.

After just nine matches, Chippa has accumulated only six points, with Hunt's last victory dating back to 21 August against Sekhukhune United.

Chippa United's 2021/22 results:

Sekhukhune United 0-1 Chippa United

Chippa United 0-0 Mamelodi Sundowns

Royal AM 1-0 Chippa United

Chippa United 1-3 Orlando Pirates

Stellenbosch 2-1 Chippa United

Chippa United 0-0 SuperSport United

Kaizer Chiefs 4-0 Chippa United

Chippa United 0-0 Swallows FC

Cape Town City 1-0 Chippa United

Hunt, the joint-second most decorated soccer coach in South Africa, shocked the football fraternity when he grabbed the opportunity to jump back into management after Kaizer Chiefs sacked him as their mentor in May.

A torrid short spell at the helm of Amakhosi ended abruptly, nine months into his three-year deal with the Soweto giants.

After Chiefs cut ties with Hunt, he took on an analyst role with broadcasting giant SuperSport for the 2020 Euros, with expectations that he’ll be there for the duration of the tournament.

But that was short-lived as Hunt answered the call of Chippa chairperson Siviwe Mpengesi.

Mpengesi is well-known for his quick fix attempts in sacking coaches; however, he recently came out backing Hunt despite the former Bidvest Wits mentors poor start to the 2021/22 campaign.

"The coach has our full support. We want to see him and the players succeed. So, I urge all of you to be patient," Mpengesi said.

"Patience is important as it is a prime mediator of success in any sport, especially team sports like soccer. As owners, we are in this thing for the long haul, and we are not looking for quick fixes at all.

"While we have had a difficult start this season, though only a few weeks old, has been nothing short of exciting.

"We have seen some wonderful displays of football, some really crazy performances and the injection of some much-needed energy into the local game. This has been exciting to watch."

To date, Mpengesi has hired 29 coaches – including Hunt – and sacked 28 of the mentors since 2012, a staggering statistic.

Head coach appointments at Chippa United:
  1. Manqoba Mngqithi - July 9, 2012 - August 20, 2012
  2. Julius Dube (caretaker) - August 23, 2012 - September 12, 2012
  3. Roger Sikhakhane - September 13, 2012 - October 28, 2012
  4. Farouk Abrahams - October 28, 2012 - January 29, 2013
  5. Wilfred Mugeyi - January 29, 2013 - April 11, 2013
  6. Mark Harrison - April 12, 2013 - October 7, 2013
  7. Ian Palmer - October 8, 2013 - January 27, 2014
  8. Vladislav Heric - January 29, 2014 - June 30, 2014
  9. Kosta Papic - July 1, 2014 - September 3, 2014
  10. Roger Sikhakhane (caretaker, then full-time) - September 4, 2014 - January 5, 2015
  11. Ernst Middendorp - January 5, 2015 - March 30, 2015
  12. Mich d’Avray (caretaker) - March 30, 2015 – May 5, 2015
  13. Velile “Eddie” Dyaloyi - (caretaker) May 5, 2015 - June 30, 2015
  14. Roger Sikhakhane - July 1, 2015 - December 8, 2015
  15. Dan Malesela (caretaker, then full-time) - December 8, 2015 - April 27, 2017
  16.  Mbuyiselo Sambu (caretaker) - April 28, 2017 - May 16, 2017
  17. Dan Malesela May 17, 2017 - September 14, 2017
  18. Teboho Moloi September 14, 2017 - March 3, 2018
  19. Vladislav Heric March 3, 2018 - June 30, 2018
  20. Dan Malesela July 1, 2018 - August 22, 2018
  21. Eric Tinkler August 22, 2018 - December 2, 2018
  22. Joel Masutha December 2, 2018 - January 10, 2019
  23. Clinton Larsen January 11, 2019 - September 16, 2019
  24. Duran Francis (caretaker) September 17, 2019 - September 30, 2019
  25. Norman Mapeza - October 1, 2019 - March 3, 2020
  26. Rulani Mokwena - March 4, 2020 - July 5, 2020
  27. Lehlohonolo Seema-  July 6, 2020 – (suspended on December 23, 2020)
  28. Dan Malesela - December 27, 2020 - April 2021
  29. Gavin Hunt - August 2021 - Present

Meanwhile, Chippa, under Hunt's tutelage, had not put in terrible performances as lady luck has evaded the coaches side in recent weeks.

In fact, on Wednesday, City was lucky enough not to taste defeat as Chippa controlled the majority of the encounter but failed to make the most of their chances.

Such has been the case for Hunt’s side in each match he has overseen thus far, which has been impressive, but results are football’s only currency that matters.

READ HERE | Hunt rues 'unbelievable chances' missed, Tinkler happy with ugly win after MTN8 heartbreak

In addition, Mpengesi and Hunt brought in 16 new faces a few days before the 2021/22 campaign kicked off.

In the past decade, Chippa has chopped and changed at least 3.29 coaches per season - an alarming statistic, that is.

It brings to question, despite his recent public statement, will Mpengesi be patient, or will he pull the trigger and end Hunt's reign if results continue to elude Chippa?

Only time will tell.

However, Hunt's next five fixtures could change the trajectory of his fate if he can guide them to victories.

Chippa will come up against Maritzburg United on Sunday before the mandatory FIFA international break.

When the Premiership resumes, the Chilli Boys will take on Baroka, Marumo Gallants, Golden Arrows and TS Galaxy.

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Fixtures
Sat 16 Apr 22 13:00 PM (SAST)
Sekhukhune United
TS Galaxy
Makhulong Stadium
SuperSport
Sat 16 Apr 22 13:00 PM (SAST)
AmaZulu
Maritzburg Utd
Moses Mabhida Stadium
Sat 16 Apr 22 15:00 PM (SAST)
Cape Town City FC
Royal AM
DHL Stadium
Results
Wed 10 Aug 22
Stellenbosch
Stellenbosch 1
Orlando Pirates
Orlando Pirates 1
Wed 10 Aug 22
Sekhukhune United
Sekhukhune United 1
Golden Arrows
Golden Arrows 0
Wed 10 Aug 22
Mamelodi Sundowns
Mamelodi Sundowns 0
TS Galaxy
TS Galaxy 1
Logs
Team
P
W
PTS
Team Logo
1. Mamelodi Sundowns
30
19
65
Team Logo
2. Cape Town City FC
30
12
49
Team Logo
3. Kaizer Chiefs
30
13
47
Team Logo
4. Royal AM
30
12
47