In this week’s SportPesa Clubhouse column ambassador, Doctor Khumalo touched on the player and coach relationship, and how it influences the results of a team.
Khumalo went on to give a few examples of scenarios in the various leagues in the country and how the relationship between all parties have impacted on the clubs.
“Remember when I spoke about the importance of player-coach relationship in one of my previous columns? Before going into this week’s offering, I would like to reflect on what is happening in the league. It is so interesting to see how the club, player and coach relationship influence the results because these are some of the key people to dictate the club’s atmosphere.
“I’m looking at what is happening at different clubs be it in the Absa Premiership, ABC Motsepe League and the lower leagues. It is so interesting to look at things like player movement, players’ attitude, your coach’s philosophy, management’s support and all the things that influence the progress of the team and you wonder if everyone is pulling in the same direction? Is your team exciting? Has it improved? Are the players free or desperate? Are the players eager to fight for the brand and achieve good things? Are certain individuals who have served the team through thick and thin appreciated? What lead me to talk about this is the fact that everyone can see that there are certain things happening at some teams that are obvious for everyone to see. This column is not about influencing certain things at clubs but it is about my observations. Sometimes you get players whose contract is approaching the expiry date and then the relationship with the club is no longer the same. You find that there’s no common ground reached or getting closer to resolving whatever issues may exist.
“That’s not professional and I would say a lot of things start crippling the club, taking everything good away slowly but surely. We sometimes read or hear about things happening behind the closed doors at these clubs where you find that a certain player will be off-loaded or dropped from the team not because of their capacity to deliver on the field. It is sometimes personal reasons that have nothing to do with the club. You find that a particular coach arrives and, with no explanation, change things around which doesn’t go well with everyone in the team. You must remember that a player-coach relationship is very vital. Players need to be managed in such a way that it doesn’t disrupt their performances. It doesn’t mean that when a particular player falls out of favour with a coach, he should be discarded just like that. There’s a way of handling that kind of a situation where you call the player aside and explain your reasons for dropping him and what he needs to improve on.”
“16v” went on to share some advice from the time that he was an assistant coach to Stuart Baxter at Kaizer Chiefs.
To read the full SportPesa Clubhouse column, check out this week’s edition of Soccer Laduma, issue 1113.