It was always going to be a difficult season, Zwane insists after Pirates knock Chiefs out of the Cup
Kaizer Chiefs' 2-1 defeat by Soweto arch-rivals Orlando Pirates in the semifinal of the Nedbank Cup would be viewed by many as confirmation of another terrible season.
The Glamour Boys last won a trophy in 2015, but coach Arthur Zwane doesn't see Saturday's loss in the Soweto derby as marking their season as a compete failure.
Chiefs legend Zwane took over as the club's coach at the beginning of the 2022-2023 season and his team has been promising but in the end they failed to deliver much in terms of important results in key matches. This is of course has led to the continuation of the famine at Naturena which now stretches to eight years.
But Zwane insisted after being denied a place in the cup final by Pirates that there are a few positives Chiefs supporters can take in his debut season as a head coach of the club.
“A lot of people, obviously because of the demands of playing for this team and expectations, they will see us as a failures forgetting where we come from,” Zwane said after Saturday's match.
“But I understand and I take it like a man. I'm disappointed. We could have done better and we have done a lot of things good compared to where we come from.
“It was never going to be easy anyway, hence I say I'm very proud of the players. We're only left with two games (DStv Premiership) and when you look at the stats and they always say stats don't lie.
“Go and check the stats of Kaizer Chiefs for the past three seasons and then you'll see that there's a lot of improvements in the squad compared to the previous squads that we've assembled.”
Zwane added he would also have liked to win a trophy this season but understands where the club could be next season as he believes there's been some progress made.
“Obviously this was always going to be a difficult season even if we had won one cup,” said Zwane.
“Winning a cup for Kaizer Chiefs was my mandate. I think going to the semifinal of MTN8 gave us hope and even today it was the same. We had an opportunity to kill the game off early but it wasn't to be. But I believe going forward we'll take it one step closer and we'll learn from this one.
“The fact was everyone was trying to find himself in terms of the new players who came in — new set-up, new environment and also a demanding environment. It was not an environment where you can play well one game and then the second game you can get away with it.
“With us you have to perform week in week out. Some of the guys were still adjusting to that because of the demands. I cannot blame them, that's part of a team of Kaizer Chiefs' calibre.
“We've learnt from this season and we've learnt from our mistakes and we move on and try rectify our mistakes going forward.”
Chiefs still have a slight chance of finishing third in the league to qualify for the Caf Confederation Cup which Zwane said they'll welcome because it will boost his players' experience.
To make the number three spot Chiefs must beat SuperSport United at the Royal Bafokeng Palace on Saturday and Cape Town City at home in the last match on May 20.
Both matches won't be easy for Chiefs because SuperSport are also pushing to finish second or third on the log while City want to consolidate their place in the top eight and have a chance to finish fourth.
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