Kaizer Chiefs

The Kaizer Chiefs Naturena Village in all its glory. Image: Ernest Makhaya

The deadweight Kaizer Chiefs must offload to become successful again

Complacency won’t be tolerated.

Kaizer Chiefs

The Kaizer Chiefs Naturena Village in all its glory. Image: Ernest Makhaya

To climb back to the summit of South African football, Kaizer Chiefs must send a strong message to the passengers in their squad.

Five players Kaizer Chiefs must let go of now

Itumeleng Khune

Club legend Itu Khune will leave Kaizer Chiefs with the respect of his adoring fans, as well as several glittering achievements and records. However, sentimentality isn’t a currency in football and at 36, he’s been beyond his best for some time. It’s no secret that he’ll be on his way, but now is the opportunity to grab a superstar number 1 to fill his gloves. For the record, Khune made his PSL debut for Amakhosi against Jomo Cosmos in August 2007. In the 17 years that have elapsed, he has scooped seven major honours with the Glamour Boys, including three DStv Premiership crowns in 2005, 2013 and 2015. This guy was also PSL Footballer of the Year in 2013. Say what you will, but Khune is a bona fide Amakhosi legend.

Kaizer Chiefs Itumeleng Khune
Kaizer Chiefs keeper Itumeleng Khune accepts and regrets the decision to strip him of his captaincy. Image Source: (@ItumelengKhune/Instagram)

Keagan Dolly

When you are the top earner at a club of this stature, certain non-negotiables are expected. Nobody will demonize the former Montpellier man for his injury issues this season. However, even when fit, his output has fallen off a cliff. 14 goals and 11 assists from 67 appearances isn’t an atrocious record, but it should have been a lot better from a player of this quality.

Keagan Dolly Kaizer Chiefs
Keagan Dolly of Kaizer Chiefs celebrates a goal with teammates Ashley Du Preez during DStv Premiership 2022/23 football match between Kaizer Chiefs and Stellenbosch FC at Soccer City on 01 April 2023 ©Gavin Barker/BackpagePix

Siyathemba Sithebe

The entire Chiefs midfield lacks youthful dynamism, and 31-year-old Sithebe typifies that. The former AmaZulu man has played more games than Cavon Johnson had planned, and his ongoing selection points to a need for safety and experience rather than opting for a risk-taker with creative flair. Sibongiseni Mthethwa turns 30 in September, Yusuf Maart is turning 29 and Edson Castillo will be 30 next month. Beyond them, 22-year-old Samkelo Zwane is being touted for a loan move away from Naturena. There’s not enough midfield talent to bridge the gap between youth and experience. If Zwane leaves, there’s no exciting young talent to be excited about either.

Sifiso Hlanti

33-year-old Hlanti has been a solid servant to the club but now’s the time to upgrade in the left-back position. Fawaaz Basadien signed a new deal with Stellenbosch but that won’t put the Amakhosi board off. Thanks for the memories.

Orlando Pirates Saleng Kaizer Chiefs
Monnapule Saleng of Orlando Pirates challenges Sifiso Hlanti of Kaizer Chiefs. Photo: BackpagePix

Jasond Gonzalez

Colombian striker Efmamjjasond Gonzales arrived with much fanfare but his Chiefs career has been an unmitigated disaster. Strikers should be scoring goals. This man hasn’t broken his duck for the club after 12 appearances. Several attackers are being linked with Amakhosi, and they won’t need to do much to improve on the 24-year-old’s woeful stint at Naturena.

Trophy drought continues

It’s been nine long years since the mighty Chiefs won a trophy. The 13-time South African champions lifted the 2015 DStv Premiership crown but it’s been a barren time ever since. Will the Chiefs top brass act in the upcoming transfer window? Is that even a guarantee for success? Let us know in the comments.

Soweto Derby Orlando Pirates
Kaizer Chiefs fans encapsulating the passion of a Soweto Derby. Image: BackpagePix


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