By Sikhumbuzo Moyo
Former Dynamos strongman and legend Kaitano Tembo could be appointed substantive coach of Absa Premiership side, SuperSport United, according to sources across the Limpopo River.
Tembo, a former Warriors’ defender, has been assistant coach at the Tshwane-based outfit following the departure of Erick Tinkler last season and managed to post some impressive victories that helped them escape relegation.
“It all looks towards a permanent post for Munhu Mutema (Tembo’s nickname) after impressive results while in charge of the dressing room after Tinkler left in March, leading the side in their final seven games in which he suffered only one defeat,” said the source.
Tembo was first appointed SuperSport United Under-17 coach in November 2007, a year after a recurrent knee injury forced him to call time on his playing career. He had made more than 200 appearances, including continental matches for Matsantsantsa.
A tough as teak defender at the peak of his playing career, Tembo also won the 1997 domestic championship with Dynamos and helped them to secure a place in the Champions League group stage the following year.
He, however, signed for Gavin Hunt’s Seven Stars in the 1998-99 season, leaving DeMbare before they reached the Caf Champions League final in which they lost 4-2 on aggregate to Asec Mimosa of Côte d’Ivoire.
Tembo’s class at DeMbare included the likes of former Warriors’ coach; Callisto Pasuwa, Claudius Zviripayi, Masimba Dinyero, Memory Mucherahowa, Gift Muzadzi, Makwinji Soma-Phiri, Lloyd Mutasa and Chamu Musanhu.
The former tough tackling defender has also won the hearts of his players at SuperSport, with skipper and Bafana Bafana midfielder Dean Furman telling a South African media house that players were in full support of Tembo taking over.
“Kaitano has been with the club for a long time, even before I was here he was the assistant, so he knows the players inside out and we know him very well. There’s a strong bond between the players and the coach, it’s not like we have to start afresh with someone new, who has new ideas.
“He’s taken training kind of back to basics and made it a place we enjoy going to every day. We’re being allowed to express ourselves and we’re enjoying our football under him, so the players have given him their full backing and we want to give him a team to be proud of this season,” Furman told Kickoff.com.
The 2018/19 season gets underway this weekend with SuperSport kick starting their season with a tricky tie against Cape Town City tomorrow evening. The Chronicle