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Komphela exposes internal issues at Swallows, citing reasons for exit

Former Moroka Swallows coach Steve Komphela has lifted the lid on internal issues that contributed to his departure from the club.

The club confirmed Komphela’s departure at the Dube Birds on Monday evening. Swallows announced that they parted ways with the former Mamelodi Sundowns senior coach on a mutual agreement. 

The ex-Kaizer Chiefs mentor leaves Maswaiswai after just seven months at the helm. 

Problems started when the side failed to pay its players their salaries, which led to a strike in December last year. As a result, Swallows were forced to pull the plug on their DStv Premiership fixtures against Mamelodi Sundowns and Golden Arrows due to an unresolved dispute [non-payment of salaries] between the players and management.

The Soweto side were scheduled to face Sundowns and Arrows on the 27th and 30th of December 2023 respectively. Failure to honour the two fixtures, Swallows were charged by the PSL DC for misconduct and bringing the league into disrepute.

The club appeared before the PSL DC on Thursday, 11 January 2024. Swallows were then fined R1 million, with R600k suspended on condition that they do not commit the same offence during the period [24 months] of the suspension.

Moroka Swallows players during a training session.
Moroka Swallows players during a training session


In an interview on Metro FM on Tuesday night, Komphela revealed some of the things that transpired before his departure at Swallows. 

“Some of the things I saw at Swallows, I have not seen or experienced anywhere. But I have to be cautious because I don’t want my next employer to feel like I have no confidentiality,” said Komphela. 

“I felt like I was fighting things that I felt would make us better. It was basic stuff that an efficient team manager should be able to do. In Stellies, we were told that our pre-match meeting and meal were prepared in the gym. So, in the end, it’s me in front of the players, and I told them that this was hogwash. In no time, we were given a meeting room. Which team manager, who is right in his head, would allow that image? 

“There is stuff I cannot speak about, but it’s just not right. I really wish the best for Musa [Nyatama], Ditheko [Mototo], and Thela [Ngobeni]. I am trying to package my responses, but at the same time, I am saying, can we please do better.”


Komphela continued: “Just be a human before you become an administrator. I am a person before I am a coach. It pains me when I see what the players had to go through. What beauty is a meal when you have it alone, but others around you are starving? When I get criticised, it doesn’t hurt me. It is the pain that is felt by others, and that pains me more”

“I have no business talking to executives on administrative stuff, and that is not my place. So, I have never said anything nasty about someone who has put bread on my table. So, I will not start now. I am grateful to Swallows for the opportunity.

“I have two books that I have written, and I hope that when I pass on, my daughters’ can get their hands on them.” 

RELATED STORY: ‘It is illegal to enter an exit’: Komphela writes to Swallows

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