Noose tightening on failing PSL coaches

Bernard Molekwa coach of Polokwane City during the Polokwane City media open day at Old Peter Mokaba Stadium on November 16, 2017 in Polokwane, South Africa.
Bernard Molekwa coach of Polokwane City during the Polokwane City media open day at Old Peter Mokaba Stadium on November 16, 2017 in Polokwane, South Africa.
Image: Philip Maeta/Gallo Images

While Gavin Hunt continues to receive expression of support from his Bidvest Wits employers‚ the coming weeks’ league fixtures look perilous for at least three of the Premier Soccer League coaches.

Fadlu Davids‚ Stanley Menzo and Bernard Molekwa need a revival in their teams’ fortunes if they are not to tempt their clubs into a change of coach before the end of the year and an opportunity to bring someone new in to start 2018 afresh.

The 36-year-old Davids‚ the youngest of the PSL coaches‚ drew plenty of praise as Maritzburg United made a strong start to the season but they have not won now for the last three months – a total of 11 matches.

Maritzburg are in 12th spot with 11 points from 10 games and next take on Cape Town City‚ in a match now moved to Durban‚ followed by a home clash with league leaders Baroka next Friday and then play away at Mamelodi Sundowns. They meet Lamontville Golden Arrows before the league breaks for the festive season break.

Maritzburg have managed a paltry five goals in the league this season and have not found the net in their last 722 minutes of action – just over 12 hours.

Menzo has struggled to get an under-resourced Ajax Cape Town going this season and the club are in a three-way tie at the bottom of the standings‚ with only nine points from 11 games.

Ajax‚ beaten 1-0 away at SuperSport United in their last match on Wednesday‚ have won only twice this season.

They face a difficult programme to finish the year‚ including seeing their home match against Chippa United being moved to Johannesburg because of Cape Town’s stadium crisis.

They next meet champions Wits next Wednesday‚ then Chippa next Saturday‚ December 9‚ also at the Bidvest Stadium.

They complete the year away against Chiefs – meaning all three of their remaining games are in Gauteng and will see Ajax start as underdogs.

Ajax did not spend much in the off-season and a lack of capacity in their squad is being to become all too evident

Molekwa had already been under pressure this season but then kept the wolves from the door with a run to the Telkom Knockout semifinals and was unlucky not to book a first final appearance for Polokwane City‚ who lost on penalties to Bloemfontein Celtic.

The Limpopo club are‚ ironically‚ unbeaten in their last eight matches but have not won either since beating AmaZulu away in mid-October. Their last six games have all ended in draws.

The Limpopo-based side have two successive home games ahead – against Platinum Stars and Wits – and then finish the year away against Chippa United in Port Elizabeth.

Hunt‚ with four league titles under his belt‚ has been told his job at Wits is safe despite the club being bottom of the table.

Saturday’s appearance in the Telkom Knockout final against Bloemfontein Celtic in Durban also mitigates in his favour but if Wits remain in relegation peril in the second half of the season it will be fascinating to see what the club’s management decide to do.

There have already been three coaching casualties this season with Peter Butler (Platinum Stars)‚ Sammy Troughton (Free State Stars) and Dan Malesela (Chippa United) given the chop.

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