Lehlohonolo Seema, 40, says he is determined to defy the odds and become the first Chippa United coach to see out his contract.
“I am young, and everyone has to write their own history. I know what has happened before I came here, but that’s not what I am here for. Some people have written my obituary. I want to fight and be the coach that can come here and see his contract through,” the coach told the Siya crew a day after he was appointed by the Chilli Boys.
The former Orlando Pirates and Lesotho captain becomes the club’s fourth hire this season alone and the 22nd overall in eight years.
Seema, who spent four years at Bloemfontein Celtic – two of those as head coach – replaced Rulani Mokwena, who was only with Chippa for three months.
“To be honest, the chairman (Siviwe Mpengesi) did not have to say much to convince me. It’s been on my mind to leave Celtic and look for a new challenge,” he said as suggestions are that he quit his previous job over non-payment issues.
Celtic’s financial woes are no secret to the football fraternity.
“I had been there for a long time and sometimes when you are in a comfort zone you tend to relax, thinking you are still on the right path. For me to grow, I can’t stay in one place. I think this just happened at the time when I was contemplating a new challenge myself,” Seema explained.
“And the chairman has given me his support and given me his word. I have no doubt in my mind about my ability – I stayed at Celtic for such a long time despite what was happening and it shows that I don’t run away when the going gets tough. Even as a player I never moved around a lot. I stuck where I was and I am a fighter.”
Did he speak to his predecessors about the job many feel is a poisoned chalice?
What about his mandate over the course of his three-year deal as well as the remaining six matches ahead of the Premier Soccer League restart.
“I haven’t spoken to any of the previous coaches, that won’t be helpful. I am here to write my own history. I don’t know their situation,” Seema said.
“The advantage my colleagues have over me is maybe that they are more familiar with the players, but so am I despite the fact that I only just arrived. The chairman has said if we manage to save our topflight status he will be happy, and next season we can have a fresh start and I have his support.”
Story by @superjourno
Scroll through to see all 21 coaches before Seema at Chippa