Absa Premiership

We chose the wrong players, admits Kaizer Motaung

FLOP:  Enocent Mkhabela failed to shine at Kaizer Chiefs. (Philip Maeta, Gallo Images)
FLOP: Enocent Mkhabela failed to shine at Kaizer Chiefs. (Philip Maeta, Gallo Images)

Johannesburg - Kaizer Chiefs boss Kaizer Motaung has admitted that poor decisions were made when signing new players.

Before the beginning of the season, Chiefs announced the arrival of Mitchell Katsvairo, Lewis Macha, Keagan Buchanan, Enocent Mkhabela, Ryan Moon, Ramahlwe Mphahlele, Sibusiso Khumalo, Edmore Chirambadare and Joseph Molangoane.

The club also promoted Emmanuel Letlotlo from its youth structure.

Of all the players signed this season, only four – Mphahlele, Khumalo, Molangoane and Chirambadare – have been regulars.

Some good prospects

Mkhabela went to Platinum Stars on loan without featuring for Amakhosi, and Moon was making his third appearance for the team when he scored against Golden Arrows last weekend.

Zimbabwean defender Katsvairo, who has 12 appearances, last played in December, while Zambian striker Macha featured in only four games and Buchanan made six appearances.

“It simply means we made the wrong choices,” said Motaung.

“That’s why the issue of review comes into play. We need to check if we did the right things or not. Obviously, we also need to look at our youth structure as there are some good prospects”.

Motaung said that the problem sometimes related to coaches who did not believe in youngsters.

“Some of the coaches don’t buy into young players and don’t give them the opportunities they deserve. As a result, we lose good players who go on and excel at other clubs. When you wake up, you want to buy them back”.

Chiefs will now go two successive seasons without silverware, but Motaung said this was not a train smash.

“I know it is not a nice thing to say to our supporters because, over the years, we have spoilt them. We can just take solace from the fact that, in the past four seasons, only two clubs have dominated – Chiefs and Sundowns. And if Sundowns win it, they will go one over us”.

Problem has been consistency

Chiefs have come under attack from supporters for not buying quality players. However, it is no longer the case that every player’s dream is to don the Amakhosi colours.

But Motaung believes players are overpriced when Chiefs come knocking.

“The market is skewed as the player’s value is determined by where he is going or who is interested in him – not by the actual value of the player.

“A player could be worth R500 000 to one club, but, when it come to Chiefs, the asking price will be about R5 million. I think we must follow the European way, where everything is transparent.”

Motaung summed up Chiefs’ season as a “mixed bag”, saying they had their ups and downs.

“We didn’t start well and then got it right at some stage, but took another dive just as I thought things were coming right. The biggest problem has been consistency as we dropped points that we should not have, but it is the nature of the game”.

However, he said that was water under the bridge as they look towards the next season.

Last season

“We need to get our act together and make sure next season turn out differently. We will have a proper review of what went wrong and then map the way forward. We will give everybody a chance to have a say so that we can make decisions based on sound information”.

Motaung also threw his weight behind coach Steve Komphela. Despite Komphela not winning anything in two seasons, Motaung believes there are signs of progress.

“The first season was not so bad as far as I’m concerned because we reached two cup finals, although we didn’t do well in the league. With the team we have now, we are playing much better than last season and there is improvement. But we need to tighten up the loose ends as it is clear there is something missing,” he said.

“Steve still has my backing, but we will obviously analyse the whole thing at the end of the season. We cannot use the fact that he did not win anything in the past two seasons as a reason to change.”