Stellenbosch Chiefs players

Stellenbosch FC coach Steve Barker in charge at the Athlone Stadium. Image: BackpagePix

Why Stellenbosch FC lost form – Steve Barker

Stellenbosch FC enjoyed a dream season in the DStv Premiership. However, Stellies finished the last five games without a win.

Stellenbosch Chiefs players

Stellenbosch FC coach Steve Barker in charge at the Athlone Stadium. Image: BackpagePix

Stellenbosch FC should be hugely proud after a stellar 2023/24 season in the DStv Premiership, despite going five matches without a win in the final five matches. Coach Steve Barker has explained why.


Winning the Carling Knockout in December 2023 and finishing in third place to qualify for the CAF Condeferation Cup was briliant success for the Stellenbosch FC. Why and how did they stumble in the final five games?

“I think it’s four [league matches where we struggled]to be honest [including] the draw against AmaZulu,” Barker said via FARPost.

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“One point from 12, you end up not achieving the target if that’s the case.

“But it’s quite a simple fact, we’ve got a thin squad in terms of numbers. And when you have such a long unbeaten run and then you lose it.

“We have two exhausting games, both games against Sundowns, cup and the league.

“Unlucky against AmaZulu, we were the far better team and then our worst performance was probably against Swallows. That was the killer one.


“I think fatigue, mental and physical sort of strain on the players. It’s a position that we’re not used to being in,” the Stellenbosch mentor added.

“It’s a different type of pressure, it’s a good pressure, it’s a pressure that we must embrace. Hopefully, going forward, we can continue this way.

“But yeah once that unbeaten record gets broken, it does deflect you a little bit. Football is not easy, it’s a tough league.

“I just saw results, Sundowns getting their unbeaten run broken, a team like Kaizer Chiefs not being able to get over the line.

“A tough league, sometimes it’s those that are more desperate at the bottom of the table that at this time of the season are the most difficult teams to play against,” the Stellenbosch tactician concluded.


As always, Orlando Pirates are anticipated to make new signings for next season. Andries Sebola wants Iqraam Rayners from Stellenbosch FC to be one of the names.

According to Sebola, there are not many top players available in the market, but Rayners should be going to Orlando Pirates next season.

The 28-year-old striker from Mitchells PlainCape Town has 16 goals and eight assists in all competitions this season. Rayners was further crowned as his club’s Player of the Season, Top Goalscorer and Fans’ Player of the Season.

“I still believe that Pirates need to go outside the county [to scout for players] because most of the quality players are at Sundowns. So, looking at [Iqraam] Rayners, if they can convince Stellies to bring him on board, it will be good,” the former Orlando Pirates striker said. – READ THE FULL STORY HERE.