Chippa aiming high in PSL
Manqoba Mngqithi (Gallo Images)
Johannesburg - New Chippa United coach Manqoba Mngqithi says he is excited about the prospect of coaching the newly promoted outfit in the coming premiership season.
The Cape side on Monday announced Mngqithi, the former Golden Arrows and AmaZulu mentor, as a replacement for Roger Sikhakane, who has not been fired from the team but was away for "family reasons".
"I am excited about the new prospect," said Mngqithi, after concluding a one-year deal with an option to extend.
"I also did my own homework on the club and so far everything is going well. We will be aiming very high in the season."
The highly rated Mngqithi last coached AmaZulu in the Premier Soccer League before he was fired early last season.
He went on to assist Shakes Mashaba with the SA Under-23 team that played in the final Olympic qualifier tournament in Morocco in December.
Mngqithi, who has previously been linked to a position at Kaizer Chiefs' youth development set-up, was expected to meet the united players this week.
Chippa United's general manager Wanda Mbenguzana, said the decision to appoint Mngqithi was based on his experience working with the youth and the fact that Sikhakane had personal issues to attend.
"It's not a bad option [hiring Mngqithi]," Mbenguzana said.
"When we made the decision along with the chairman [Chippa Mpengesi], we decided that his experience and history of working with the youth will assist us.
"Manqoba is very familiar with this, considering that we have a lot of young and inexperienced players in the club.
"Initially, it was also not our intention but Sikhakane requested time to sort personal, family problems and recover for the next three weeks.
"The problem is, the three weeks requested falls in the time that we are busy with our preparations."
Mbenguzana said Sikhakane would still have a role in the club but felt that they would be undermining his achievements over the past season should they make him Mngqithi's assistant.
"We have not discussed Sikhakane's role in the team, I won't lie," said Mbenguzana.
"Maybe he will be technical director because we cannot remove someone who has reached success with the club and make him assistant.
"But those are some of the things that will be discussed when he returns."
The club, founded two years ago, was expected to unveil new signings next week ahead of their inaugural season in the top flight.
Among those signed are two Nigerian internationals, goalkeeper Issa Doumbia and striker Idrissa Seydou, who were plying their trade in the DR Congo and Cameroon respectively.
Both players were part of Nigeria's Africa Cup of Nations tournament squad earlier this year.