Robson Sharuko Senior Sports Editor
THEY are both 50, share a common denominator as former players who returned to become coaches of the Glamour Boys of Zimbabwean and South African football, one of them finally fell by the wayside amid chaotic scenes in Durban on Saturday while the other is just hanging on to his job.
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the world of Steve Komphela and Lloyd Mutasa.
Born in the same year, 1967, the two coaches have found themselves under the spotlight, and intense pressure, in recent weeks with Komphela being forced to throw in the towel on Saturday after riotous Kaizer Chiefs fans set parts of the Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban on fire.
This followed a 0-2 defeat at the hands of Free State Stars in the semi-final of the Nedbank Cup which confirmed that the Amakhosi, who are also known as the Glamour Boys, would finish without a trophy for the third straight season in a row under Komphela’s leadership.
The coach took over at Chiefs in June 2015, replacing Stuart Baxter who is now in charge of Bafana Bafana, and inherited a team that had won a League and Cup Double and had been crowned champions in two of the previous three years.
However, despite a promising start, Chiefs stalled under Komphela’s tutelage and they finished fifth in the league championship race in the coach’s first season in charge and fourth in the second season while they are likely to finish fourth this season.
The defeat on Saturday also meant that Chiefs, who have a tradition of winning silverware in South Africa, would finish without a trophy for the third straight season and it was the team’s 27th loss under Komphela’s watch.
The coach’s record of 42%, in all his games in charge (47 of 112), in which they drew 38, was not the kind the Chiefs fans had been hoping for and things came to a head in Durban on Saturday when some of the supporters went on rampage.
Komphela was criticised by some of the club’s fans for having a defensive approach which saw Chiefs average just 1.3 goals per game during his time in charge, scoring 148 in his 112 matches, while conceding over one goal per game (116 in 112).
Crucially, for the Chiefs fans, he also didn’t win the match that matters, the Soweto Derby against Orlando Pirates, in open play during his time in charge and on Saturday the two parties agreed to part ways.
Across the Limpopo, pressure also increased on Mutasa on Sunday after DeMbare, the Glamour Boys of Zimbabwe football, crashed to a morale-sapping 0-1 defeat at the hands of bitter rivals CAPS United in the Harare Derby at the National Sports Stadium.
Mutasa refused to throw in the towel, after the match, saying he remained confident he could turn things around even though his critics question his ability to steer a team which is short on both quality and experience to success.
The Glamour Boys finished second in the league championship race last season but lost some of the key players to that campaign, including leading striker Christian Epoupa who was frustrated by promises from the club management which were never fulfilled, and chose to watch the Harare Derby from the stands on Sunday. Tichaona Chipunza, one of the success stories at DeMbare last year, walked out on the team and moved to Ngezi Platinum because they could not pay him his dues while Denver Mukamba was forced out of the side after a fallout with Mutasa.
Komphela was in charge of Kaizer Chiefs for 35 months while Mutasa has been in charge of Dynamos, as the head coach, in 31 months since his appointment at the start of 2011.
Dynamos have played 85 league matches under Mutasa’s watch and won 40 of them, less than half those games, and have drawn 24 and lost 21, scoring 106 goals and conceding 62 for a tally of 144 points out of a possible 255 points.
DeMbare have dropped 111 points in the league under Mutasa during his spells as head coach which incorporates the time he was in charge of the club in 2011, before he was forced out to be replaced by Callisto Pasuwa, and when he took over from Paulo Silva in 2016 up to now.
His success record in the league is 56.47% after winning eight of the 19 matches in his first spell in 2011; drawing six and losing five; winning 11 of the 25 matches he was in charge in 2016; drawing eight and losing six; winning 21 of the 34 matches he took charge of last year, drawing seven and losing six and without a victory in his first seven league matches this season.
The three points from a possible 21 represents the worst start for DeMbare in a league campaign in recent years and the Glamour Boys are only separated from bottom club ZPC Kariba because of a superior goal difference which, in itself, appears to be an insult to them given they have just scored four times, including three against Shabanie, all season.
Crucially, for the DeMbare fans, they have seen their team fail to beat Highlanders, on the field, under Mutasa’s watch in the league with Bosso forcing a goalless draw in the first match at Barbourfields in 2011 while the coach was not in charge for the reverse fixture in Harare.
Bosso then came to the capital and beat DeMbare 2-0 in the of their two encounters in 2016, the first victory by the Bulawayo giants over their rivals in a league match in 10 years, before completing a double with a 2-1 win at Barbourfields.
Last year’s encounter at Barbourfields was abandoned just before half-time because of crowd trouble, with the score tied at 1-1, and Dynamos were awarded the match 3-0 through the boardroom while Bosso forced a 1-1 draw at Rufaro.
In their league match in Harare this year, Bosso beat DeMbare 1-0 at Rufaro.
Mutasa’s DeMbare completed a double over CAPS United in 2011 but the coach was part of the Silva backroom staff as the Green Machine beat their rivals in a league match for the first time since 2009 with a 1-0 win at Rufaro in 2016.
The reverse match at the giant stadium saw CAPS United recover from a three-goal deficit, in the last five minutes, to force a 3-3 draw. Last year, CAPS beat Dynamos at Rufaro 1-0 and lost the reverse match 0-2 while on Sunday they won against the old enemy.
Under Mutasa, Dynamos have also been dumped out of the first round of the Chibuku Super Cup with How Mine winning on penalties at Rufaro in 2016 and Bulawayo City also winning 2-1 at the same venue last year.
Komphela managerial record at Kaizer Chiefs:
l Matches: 112
l Wins: 47
l Draws: 38
l Win%: 42
l No win in regulation time in the Soweto Derby
Mutasa managerial record at Dynamos:
l League Matches: 85
l Wins: 40
l Draws: 24
l Losses: 21
l Win % 56.48
l No win on the field in the league against Highlanders
l One win in last five in the Harare Derby against CAPS United, failed to score in three of those matches