Give Gavin Hunt the Orlando Pirates coaching job, says ex-Bucs star Jerry Sikhosana

19 August 2021 - 15:04
By Ofentse Ratsie
Chippa United coach Gavin Hunt during the 2021/2022 DStv Premiership season launch at FNB Stadium on August 18.
Image: Lefty Shivambu/Gallo Images Chippa United coach Gavin Hunt during the 2021/2022 DStv Premiership season launch at FNB Stadium on August 18.

Jerry Sikhosana says his former club Orlando Pirates should have appointed well-travelled Gavin Hunt as head coach, and not Mandla Ncikazi.

Pirates parted ways with German mentor Josef Zinnbauer this week after a talented Bucs side bolstered by strong signings ahead of the 2020-21 season failed to reach their potential. The relationship came to an abrupt end when the coach resigned on Monday.

Speaking to Power FM Sport on Wednesday, the former Pirates striker said local football players respect white coaches over black mentors and he added that Hunt should have been given the job at the Bucs.

“Mandla Ncikazi had a small team without any pressure. He had a time to build Golden Arrows. It is the same as [coach] Steve Komphela when he did the same with Arrows with Ncikazi as his assistant coach,” he said.

“We are now talking about Benni [McCarthy] at AmaZulu, there's no pressure there. Bring Benni at Orlando Pirates, I am telling you that five to six months down the line people will be speaking negatively about him.”

While Hunt struggled at Chiefs before he was eventually shown the door in May, Sikhosana believes that the coach would have been the right man to assume the seat at Pirates.

“Sure, things did not work for Gavin at Chiefs, but it is because he could not sign players,” he said. “And another thing, it was hard because he had players that he could not use as they could not register them and that frustrated him.

“Gavin Hunt will bounce back. I believe Gavin can lead Orlando Pirates. I would prefer Gavin at Pirates.”

Sikhosana applauds the performance of Cape Town City players since the arrival of coach Eric Tinkler at the club, after Sunday's MTN8 victory against AmaZulu.

“Let’s look at what Eric Tinkler is doing now at Cape Town City,” he said. “Look at how Cape Town City played on Sunday. It was not just a display it was like something out of this world. You can see the change of attitude from those players.”

He added: “When black coaches talk to black players, they just say 'ahhh eish this one, ke tla mmona man' [I’ll see him]. But when a white coach talks to a black player, the player does not turn their backs, they listen.

“We still have this problem of skin us South African players. The skin is a problem to us because we always respect the white skin compared to our own.”