Kaizer Chiefs fans' lack of tactical knowledge was exposed during the inaugural Carling Black Label Cup this past weekend, writes iafrica.com's Khaya Ndubane.
For years, Chiefs players and coaches have been subjected to abuse from their own fans who believed they know it all, but when the fans were given a chance to show that they are indeed all-knowing, they failed dismally.
Over six million Chiefs fans voted for the Amakhosi starting 11 during this weekend’s Carling Black Lable Cup and in the end they came up with a team that would have lost by a big margin to Orlando Pirates had players like Jimmy Tau and Mandla Masango not pulled out due to 'last minute' injuries.
For people who believe they know everything, it was puzzling to see Chiefs fans voting for a starting line-up that had no natural left-back or anchorman.
To make matters worse Chiefs had just signed Bafana Bafana left-back Keegan Ritchie, but the Amakhosi faithful chose to have two right backs in their team - Tau and Tlou Molekwane.
As if that was not enough, the Chiefs fans also opted for three wingers - Masango, Siphiwe Tshabalala and Abia Nale in their four man midfield and the left out midfield strongmen like Tinashe Nengomashe and Reneilwe Letsholonyane.
Tau and Masango's ‘injuries’ (personally, I don't think these players were truly injured) were a blessing in disguise for Chiefs, because I have no doubt that Pirates would have walloped Chiefs on Saturday if their opponents had gone into the game with the line-up voted for by the fans.
Oupa Manyisa and Andile Jali - who terrorised a strong Chiefs line-up in the Vodacom Challenge just weeks ago - would have enjoyed a walk in the park against soft-tackling players like Josta Dladla and Tshabalala.
After being 'saved' by the technical team, who introduced Reneilwe Letsholonyane (anchorman) and Tefu Mashamaite (left back), the Chiefs fans once again showed the tactical shortcomings by removing the workaholic Letsholonyane at half-time and leaving ineffective players like Dladla and Nale on the field.
Worse still, the Chiefs fan who was the coach for the first 45 minutes seemed clueless on the bench as he kept on telling the players to go forward even though Chiefs were under siege ny Pirates.
In the end, Chiefs were lucky that the game ended goalless at full-time before deservedly losing on penalties.
For years Chiefs have been fined because of their fans' behaviour at stadiums - fans who threw missiles at players and officials when results don't go their way - while the players have also been subjected to abuse by their own fans who booed them when they wanted them to be substituted.
One hopes that this will come to an end as the Carling Black Label Cup concept has shown that the Chiefs fans are clueless when it comes to tactical matters.
Therefore going forward Chiefs fans should leave tactical matters to the man who has been employed for that job - and that is the coach!
I hope that Amakhosi fans do learn a thing or two from their rival club (Orlando Pirates) fans who opted for continuity because as it is today they are smiling because once again they have all the bragging rights!