Mascom Top 8 champions BDF XI have confirmed the termination of their coach Elijah Chikwanda’s contract following a meeting with the Zambian tactician on Monday. The club parted ways with the former Nico United trainer following what they perceived as unsatisfactory results.
Matebele’s public relations officer, Peo Keatlholetswe confirmed the news in an interview with Gazette Sport. Keatlholetswe revealed that the decision to part ways with the coach was mutual as he also acknowledged the team’s shortcomings during the Monday held meeting.
“It is true, we have parted ways with the coach. We held discussions with him on Monday morning and both parties agreed that a separation was the best solution to our problem. The team was underachieving, the management team felt that the club was not performing to the best of its potential. Chikwanda also agreed that the team was not doing well during his presentation,” Keatlholetswe stated.
“The team is currently situated in a league position that it should not be in. BDF XI should be higher up the league table. We have qualified for the Mascom Top 8 semi finals but we did so in an unconvincing manner, our league performances have been disappointing as well,” she added.
Chikwanda led the club to their first trophy (the 2014 Mascom Top 8) in 10 years, however, critics argued that he found the club as a ‘well oiled machine’, they claimed that the club was already in a well placed position to succeed.
Joel Chonga, the side’s goalkeeper coach, will be the interim coach until further notice according to Keatlholetswe. The club has not ruled out naming Chonga as their permanent head coach if he does well in an interim role.
Former BDF XI coach Letang Kgengwenyane has returned from Zambia following a year attending to academic commitments. Kgengwenyane helped mold BDF XI into a formidable side before submitting to his academic calling last year. He was believed to be the man to lead them back to the glory days before his departure.
He led the club to the Mascom Top 8 final in 2013 and left the club in a title competing position before Chikwanda took over, he also has a good rapport within the playing staff.
Keatlholetswe stated that they cannot rule out or confirm the possibility of approaching Kgengwenyane. The club is well aware that their former coach is available and they have stated that ‘the ball is in his court’ if he would express an interest in returning.
BDF XI is currently is the seventh position on the log, nine points away from the league leaders.