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 By Nick Said

The mixed success of Kaizer Chiefs' last five coaches


Italian coach Giovanni Solinas has been tasked with taking Kaizer Chiefs back to the glory days of lifting trophies as the best and most respected club in the country.

He faces a daunting task to build a squad capable of competing with defending champions Mamelodi Sundowns and a resurgent Orlando Pirates, but does at least have experience of the Premier Soccer League after two brief spells with Free State Stars in 2016.

Chiefs have had five permanent coaches in the last 11 years and had mixed success over that time. KweséESPN looks back at the record of the quintet and how they fared.

KOSTA PAPIC

Nationality: Serbia

Tenure: March 7, 2007 - June 4, 2007

Record: P7 W2 D2 L3


Win ratio: 29%

Trophies won: None

Papic was drafted in after the departure of German coach Ernst Middendorp but last just a few months after a disappointing run-in to the league season. The Serb is known for his attacking football and he tried to get Chiefs playing his flowing brand, but perhaps had too little time to truly implement his plans.
He has the lowest win percentage of the most recent coaches, although also off by far the smallest sample.    

MUHSIN ERTUGRAL

Nationality: Turkey

Tenure: July 1, 2007 - May 8, 2009

Record: P73 W31 D22 L20


Win ratio: 43%

Trophies won: 2007 Telkom Knockout; 2008 MTN8

Ertugral was brought in from Ajax Cape Town for a second spell with the club after a successful 'Vat Alles' stay at the turn of the century that included a victory in the 2001 African Cup Winners' Cup, to date the club's only continental trophy. The Turk won two trophies in two years, but Chiefs' league form was disappointing and Ertugral left at the end of his second season with the feeling he had under-achieved. SuperSport United won the league in both of his seasons in charge at Naturena with points totals in the low 50s.       

VLADIMIR VERMEZOVIC

Nationality: Serbia

Tenure: May 18, 2009 - April 12, 2012

Record: P109 W56 D30 L23

Win ratio: 51%

Trophies won: 2010, 2011 Telkom Knockout

Vermezovic was something of a left-field appointment for Chiefs, a complete unknown in the South African league. He came with a good tactical brain, but not really the personality needed to deal with South African players, though he would later also have a spell with Orlando Pirates where he won the Nedbank Cup and nothing else. His only successes for Chiefs came in back-to-back Telkom Knockout trophy wins, but his stay also coincided with a rich period for Pirates that cast the spotlight on his inability to claim the league title with Chiefs.
He eventually resigned towards the end of his three-year stay with the club.  

STUART BAXTER

Nationality: England

Tenure: July 1, 2012 - June 30, 2015

Record: P127 W77 D29 L21

Win ratio: 61%

Trophies won: 2012-13, 2014-15 Premier Soccer League; 2013 Nedbank Cup; 2014 MTN8

Baxter started his Chiefs tenure with a 4-1 MTN8 quarterfinal loss to Sundowns, but ended it as one of the most successful coaches in the club's history. He won the league title in two of his three seasons, and probably should have claimed a hat-trick but for an implosion towards the end of the 2013-14 season when the side was overtaken by Sundowns. 
He also won the Nedbank Cup and MTN8, and led the side on a 19-game unbeaten run from the start of the 2014-15 season. His tactics and calm persona were a perfect fit for the Chiefs players, even if he did not always see eye-to-eye with the club's football manager Bobby Motaung. He saw out his three-year contract, winning the league in his final season, but did not renew his deal and went on to have a two-game spell with Genclerbirligi in Turkey before returning to South Africa with first SuperSport United and then the national team.    

STEVE KOMPHELA

Nationality: South Africa

Tenure: June 17, 2015 - April 21, 2018

Record: P114 W47 D42 L25

Win ratio: 41%

Trophies won: None

Komphela quit Chiefs just weeks before the end of his third season in charge after a poor run of results had led to fan violence. He walked away from the job without winning silverware, which was all in stark contrast to the glittering success of Baxter before him. To be fair, he took over an ageing squad that needed renewal and that proved a challenge with the hit and miss (mostly miss) transfer dealings of the club management, over which he had little say. His side was always defensively strong, but battled in the final third, which proved their undoing. Had he managed to solve that problem, even to a small degree, and the picture might have been very different.

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