South African hire-and-fire club sign fifth coach this season

Johannesburg (AFP) – Chippa United, a South African club renowned for the swift hiring and firing of coaches, have appointed Lehlohonolo Seema as their fifth this season. 

One-time Orlando Pirates defender Seema replaces Rulani Mokwena. Clinton Larsen, Duran Francis and Zimbabwean Norman Mapeza were the other three incumbents this season. 

“I realise Chippa change coaches regularly, but I am not perturbed,” said the ex-Lesotho international. 

Club owner Siviwe Mpengesi, who became a millionaire by returning abandoned trolleys to supermarkets, never hesitates to sack coaches he believes are underperforming.

But the policy has not had the desired effect with Chippa finishing in the bottom half of the table five times in six seasons among the elite and being relegated once.

Chippa official Lukhanyo Mzinzi hailed the appointment of Seema, saying “Lehlohonolo does not need to prove himself anymore.

“He did well in his previous job amid all the challenges he faced,” Mzinzi added, referring to the time Seema spent at cash-strapped fellow Absa Premiership club Bloemfontein Celtic.

The immediate task for Seema is to ensure Chippa survive a seven-club struggle to avoid relegation, which carries dire financial consequences.

With the championship set to resume this month after being shut down in March due to the coronavirus, Chippa lie 12th in the 16-club league, three points above the danger zone.

Apart from winning only six of 24 matches, the club based in southern coastal city Port Elizabeth, have a scoring problem, netting just 15 times.

Meanwhile, ninth-place Celtic have replaced Seema with his assistant, former Malawi midfielder John Maduka.

Relegation is not an immediate concern of Celtic so Maduka will concentrate on a Nedbank (FA) Cup semi-final against Baroka FC, possibly as soon as next weekend.

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