There was a time where it was difficult to picture a Kaizer Chiefs side without the likes of Itumeleng Khune, Bernard Parker and Eric Mathoho, who have become household names in the local football scene. However, Chiefs’ old guard has lost some of their spark, which has led to a drastic decrease in their market values.
Gavin Hunt’s lacklustre results as Chiefs head coach, since taking over from Ernst Middendorp at the start of the season, could well depend on a number of reasons.
Yes, this is a Chiefs side who were down in spirits, having spent basically the entire 2019/20 campaign at the summit of the league, only to be usurped by eventual champions Mamelodi Sundowns, despite coming within 20 minutes of league glory.
The drop in form can also be attributed to Chiefs’ veteran stars, whose on-field impact has been on a steady decline in recent times.
None more so than Itumeleng Khune. Once dubbed Mzansi’s finest, the Ventersdorp-born goalie’s name was often one of the first on the Chiefs team-sheet.
At 32, Khune’s market value currently sits at €800k (±R15M), yet two years earlier, he was the league’s most valuable player at €1,25m (±R23.M). It comes as no surprise then that Khune has seen his market value rapidly decrease. It is often said that goalkeepers mature like fine wine, however, in Khune’s case, it appears to have fermented.
Over the last two seasons, Khune’s absence in the Chiefs side has become a reality, one that fans are slowly coming to terms with.
The 32-year-old has become a liability, he looks badly out of shape, and is a far cry from the bright-eyed teenager who burst onto the scenes in 2004. Once known for his agility and impeccable distribution, Khune has become sluggish, often causing sloppy errors In December, consecutive blunders against Black Leopards and SuperSport proved costly for Amakhosi.
Khune is not alone however, Bernard Parker is another whose value has been on a steady decrease. At his best, ‘Die Hond’ was valued at €1,25 m, (±R23M) that value currently sits at a measly €350k (±R6M) Sure, age has caught up a bit, but it's hard to believe that Parker was once Chiefs’ go-to man for goals, considering he hasn’t scored one of those for the last two seasons
Is it time for Chiefs to move on without their stalwarts?
Scroll through the gallery to see the rest of the Chiefs stars whose market values have decreased.