Mpumalanga Black Aces and their Cyprus-born coach, Aki Ayiomamidis, have parted ways.
Ayiomamidis’s axing was confirmed by Aces CEO Marc Grune on Tuesday night. The Aces boss said: “It was amicable. Ayiomamidis behaved like a gentleman and accepted the situation could not continue. We have lost all three of our matches played so far, including two at home.
“That has put us under pressure early in the season. So we sat down and discussed the situation with the coach and it was mutually agreed that he leave.”
Grune said that a new coach would be named as soon as one was found. “This happened so quickly. Therefore we have not had a chance to look around. There are not a lot of suitable candidates. The main requirement will be a coach who is familiar with the PSL and South Africa. Hopefully we will have a new head coach in place sometime next week.”
Grune conceded that one of the problems with Ayiomamidis was communication. His English was not good. “Poor communication could have been one factor. It was difficult for players to understand instructions from the bench. But it was not the main factor of him going. Losing our opening three matches was the big issue and we had to make changes and quickly.”
Grune said that assistant coach Dumi Ngobe would be in charge of the team until a replacement for Ayiomamidis was found.
The Aces CEO said he has already had enquiries from former Kaizer Chiefs, Mamelodi Sundowns and Bloemfontein Celtic coach Paul Dolezar, now living in France. He also expects applications from the likes of Gordon Igesund and Neil Tovey, who are without jobs. — Sapa