Soccer

The Hunt is over as Kaizer Chiefs appoint Gavin Hunt as coach

The appointment of the former Bidvest Wits coach will appease the army of Amakhosi fans who've had to deal with the agony of losing the league title on the last day

13 September 2020 - 00:01 By Bareng-Batho Kortjaas and Sazi Hadebe
Gavin Hunt is said to be finalising the terms and conditions of his contract as coach of Kaizer Chiefs.
Gavin Hunt is said to be finalising the terms and conditions of his contract as coach of Kaizer Chiefs.
Image: Gallo Images

The delay in announcing the appointment of Gavin Hunt as the next Kaizer Chiefs coach is down to finalising the terms and conditions of his contract.

The Sunday Times understands that Hunt has already confirmed to his close confidantes that he will be the new man in charge at Naturena.

It is believed that the four-time Premier Soccer League (PSL) winning coach (three with SuperSport United and one with the now defunct Bidvest Wits) will put pen to paper on a contract of three years and is excited by the prospect of landing arguably the hottest coaching job in the country.

Main man

"The two parties are finalising the talks around logistics in terms of the length of the contract and the numbers," said an insider close to the developments. "He is dealing directly with the main man [chairman Kaizer Motaung] and has informed his associates that the deal is as good as done."

The composition of the new technical team, added another source, will see two assistant coaches coming into the think- tank of the club.

Doctor Khumalo, a darling of Chiefs fans, coming in as the assistant coach and Kwanele Kopo, whom Hunt knows well from their days at SuperSport, have been mentioned as those names.

Khumalo won two PSL titles as assistant to Stuart Baxter. Kopo is a long-serving member of the SuperSport United academy. He is second-in-command to David Notoane at the SA under-23 side.

The appointment of Hunt will appease the army of Amakhosi fans who've had to deal with the agony of losing the league title on the last day.

They saw their team sitting on the summit of the log standings from the second match of the 2019-20 season only to collapse on the final day when Mamelodi Sundowns stole the show to defend their title.

In a tumultuous week at Chiefs, the guillotine fell on German Ernst Middendorp and his number two, Shaun Bartlett. Their dismissals ended a dismal 21-month reign during which the duo failed to end Chiefs' five-year trophy drought, the longest in the history of the Glamour Boys. Middendorp was fired on Wednesday and Bartlett on Thursday.

A shake-up in the squad is expected with several stars likely to be shown the door as Hunt wants to imprint his image on the squad as the clean out continues.

Familiar faces who won the 2016-17 championship with Hunt at Wits, players such as Phathutshedzo Nange, Sifiso Hlanti and Cole Alexander are expected in Naturena.

Hunt is said to be also eyeing Kermit Erasmus with whom Cape Town City will not part ways for a fee of less than R7m. Hunt is also known to be an admirer of exciting City midfielder Thabo Nodada whose acquisition would greatly excite the Chiefs fans.

Whaaaaat? Geez

When the Sunday Times contacted Hunt about finalising the deal yesterday, he said: "Is it? Gees, you've got very good sources. Whaaaaat? Geez, your sources are unbelievable.

"I'm in Cape Town right now and I haven't spoken to anybody, so I don't know where you're getting your stories.

"Unbelievable, unbelievable! I got nothing to say.

"All I can say is that I'm in Cape Town with my family."

Asked if there's been any other club that has contacted him since he's unemployed after Wits were sold to Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila, Hunt said he's had no talks with any club, including Chiefs.

"There's been absolutely nothing," he said, before launching into a naughty giggle.

bbk@sundaytimes.co.za; hadebes@sundaytimes.co.za

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