…former national team coach denies SA media reports he was suspended due to a string of poor results, insisting he left the Pretoria-based First Division side on his own terms
Former national football team coach Leslie Notši has left South African National First Division (NFD) outfit Garankuwa United following a string of poor results.
Notši and Lehlohonolo Thotanyana joined the Pretoria side in February this year soon after resigning as Lesotho coach and assistant coach, respectively.
The duo, who helped United to a respectable seventh-place finish on the 16-team NFD log after joining the team when it was in 10th-place, could however, not work the same magic this time around, with their charges winning only one, drawing three and losing five of the nine league matches they have played so far this season.
The poor run saw Garankuwa plummeting to second-from-bottom on the table, leaving Notši with no choice but to do the “honourable thing”, which was to tender his resignation.
Notši on Monday confirmed he had left United by mutual consent, alongside his assistant Thotanyana. The former Matlama and Lioli coach refuted South African media reports that he had been suspended pending management’s decision on his future, hence the decision to quit the team to avoid the inevitable sack.
“Results were not forthcoming, so leaving the team was the honourable thing to do,” Notši said.
“A coach is not bigger than the team and I felt this was the best decision to make, considering the situation we were in.”
Notši insisted he was leaving the team “on good terms” with management and had not been suspended as reported by some sections of the South African press.
“We are leaving United while on good terms with management, which is very important,” said Notši.
“I still have to finalise a few things with the chairman here and then I will be on my way.”
The former Matlama goalkeeper further said leaving Garankuwa was not “the end of the world” for him and Thotanyana, as other South African teams, which he would not name, were allegedly already enquiring about their availability.
Meanwhile, Notši has reportedly been replaced by the nomadic Duncan Lechesa, who recently parted ways with another NFD side, Royal Eagles.
“We are negotiating with Duncan Lechesa, but it is not final yet,” Garankuwa general manager, George Mogomotsi, is quoted as saying by KickOff.com, on Monday this week. “As for the coach who was with us [Lesley Notši], he has resigned and we are also finalising that.”
United currently have the Likuena duo of Nkau Lerotholi and Katleho Moleko, and both players were brought to the club by Notši, who was also looking at adding more Lesotho players to the team.