Middendorp back at Maritzburg
Pietermaritzburg - Ernst Middendorp was on Wednesday appointed new coach of Maritzburg United, less than a year after he was sacked.
The German takes over from Ian Palmer who was fired last week over demands for time off to attend a South African Football Association (SAFA) level three pro licence coaching course that is currently taking place in Johannesburg.
Club officials were unavailable for comment, but captain Fadlu Davids confirmed that Middendorp has been appointed the new coach. The appointment caps a remarkable turnaround between the two parties, who parted company in acrimonious circumstances in March last year.
Middendorp had asked on national television for the club to fir him, straining his relations with top management while the side was fighting relegation in the league. He departed a week later.
Palmer replaced him and led the club to safety and also guided them to a solid start to the 2011/12 season.
Speaking earlier on Wednesday, Younus Kadodia, communications manager at the Team of Choice, explained that Middendorp still had all the credentials to coach the club.
"It was a pity that he lost his cool and voiced his frustrations on television like he did, but you can't question his tactical acumen," Kadodia said.
"Plus it's football where you can't burn the bridges with anyone because your paths are bound to cross in the future."
Middendorp, who even filed a lawsuit against United for unfair dismissal last season, was subsequently appointed coach of fellow Kwa-Zulu Natal club Golden Arrows.
However, relations with the players became strained and poor results on the field eventually led to his axing in September.
He has been out of work since then.