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AmaZulu is a South African football club based in the city of Durban that plays in the Premier Soccer League. The club's nickname, Usuthu, is a Zulu war cry.

AmaZulu Football Club
AmaZulu logo.svg
Nickname(s)Usuthu, Amaqhawe (Heroes)
Founded1932; 87 years ago (1932), as Zulu Royals
GroundKing Zwelithini Stadium, Umlazi, Durban
Capacity10,000
ChairmanPatrick Sokhela
CoachSouth Africa Cavin Johnson[1]
LeagueABSA Premiership
2017/189th
WebsiteClub website
The old logo of AmaZulu F.C. before 2009.

Contents

HistoryEdit

One of the oldest clubs in South Africa, AmaZulu was formed by Zulu migrant workers in 1932 and originally named Zulu Royal Conquerors. The club was then introduced to then Zulu king Solomon, who changed the team's name to Zulu Royals, their colours to royal blue and white, and also introduced the shield to their logo[2].

Initially Prince Bayisikili was placed as the team guardian at eMsizini and later replaced by Prince Sithela and the teams headquarter was at the eMbelebeleni Royal Kraal by then the team colours had changed to bottle green and white. On the day of King Bhekizulu's funeral in the year 1968, the team went to play a Cup game against SAPPI Homestars at eMandeni, which they lost 4-2. On the day of the funeral the club was suppose to escort the King’s coffin but Mr. Shezi , Mr. Nsele, Mr. Magwaza ended up escorting the King wearing the teams uniform[3].

After that game an argument had broken up between the supporters of the club because some of them including Prince Sithela criticized the fact that, how could the team play a game on the day of the funeral of the Zulu King, when the team was supposed to mourn the King’s death. The continuation of the argument led to Mr Gideon Sibiya and Mr. Ntuli who accompanied the club to eMandeni decided to take the club away from eMbelebeleni to eWema and then it was no longer recognized at the eMbelebeleni Royal Kraal[4].

At the end of 1970 the remaining committee members consisting of Mr Mkhize and Mr Ralph Mabaso decided to rebuild the team from scratch, recruited players, acquired a kit and appointed Mr Bethuel Masondo as the team manager. The committee went on to register the club as Zulu Royals United and Mr. Bethuel Masondo was the sole director. They decided to take the team back to eMbelebeleni Royal Kraal as its headquarters[5].

In 1971 a team called African Wanderers which was located in Kwa-Zulu Natal were experiencing problems while playing in the National Professional League (NPSL) which led the NPSL to take a decision that the Kwa-Zulu Natal Football Association must suspend African Wanderers from the NPSL and then recommend another team from Kwa-Zulu Natal to replace them. The Kwa-Zulu Natal Football Association then recommended the following teams: Union Jacks, Durban City All Black, Zulu Royals United Directors or Young Dribblers[6].

The National Professional Soccer League (NPSL) at that time chairman, Mr RD Sishi, decided that Zulu Royal’s United must replace African Wanderers in the NPSL because Zulu Royals was a team which represented the Zulu Nation from the Royal Kraal and that it has a support base more than the clubs that were recommended[7].

In 1971 Zulu Royals replaced African Wanderers and went on to finish 6th on the log and were voted club of the year. The following year in 1972 the club won the N.P.S.L league title securing 44 points from 26 matches and only losing 2 games[8].

In 1973 Zulu Royal suffered a huge set back when the then manager Mr. Bethwell Masondo left the club and took with him several prominent players which split the club. After this unfortunate incident the club went into a mid-season slump that would see them not being able to successful defend their league title. In 1974, the running of the club was taken over by the supporters and in the same year, the team changed to AmaZulu Football Club. Some supporters led by Mr. Francis Dlamini who managed the reserve team decided to part ways with the reserve team to Bhekizulu hall and renamed back Zulu Royals United and its nickname were esikotshi”[9].

Other Directors that followed were Mr, Manana and Mr. Nxumalo who bought the team for R 4000.00, Mr. Merikan Madlala from Lamontville, then followed a committee made of Mr. Ngongoma, Mr. Duma, Mr. Mathe, Mr. Dlamini, Mr.Biyela and Nhleko. In 1985 the National Soccer League was formed and AmaZulu entered a new phase of their history under the leadership of Mr. David Dlamini[10].

In 1987, Clive Barker coached AmaZulu FC to finals of mainstay Cup and Iwisa Charity Cup, where they were narrowly defeated twice by Kaizer Chiefs. In 1990 the club reached the Bob Save Super Bowl final which they lost with a last minute goal against Jomo Cosmos, in 1992 the club won the inauguration Coca Cola Cup and finished 3rd on the log in 1993[11].

After Mr. Dlamini then followed Spar Natal , Mr. Ncanana, Mr. Dan Naidoo, Mr. Mike Segal , Mr. Dave King after him was Mr Sisa Bikisha in 2002, who then changed the name AmaZulu F.C to Zulu Royals[12].

In 2005, Dr Patrick Sokhela bought the team from Mr Sisa Bikisha, decided to revive the once mighty outfit of the Zulus by renaming the team back to AmaZulu Football Club. He and immediately bought the Premier Soccer League status of Dynamos to return the club to the top flight[13]. To commemorate the club's 80th anniversary in 2012 AmaZulu played a friendly against English giants Manchester United on 18 July 2012 losing by a solitary goal scored by Federico Macheda.

AmaZulu was relegated in the 2014–15 season. After a failure to be promoted in the 2016-17 season they rejoined the Premier Soccer League by purchasing the Thanda Royal Zulu's Premier Soccer League Status.[14]

After purchasing their PSL status, the team finished 7th in the 2017/2018 season[15], however they were stripped of the Top 8 finish when Ajax Cape Town fielded Tendai Ndoro in matches against Platinum Stars, Polokwane City & Supersport United. This resulted in Ajax Cape Town losing all three matches 3-0 & fined R50 000 on each offence[16], and AmaZulu dropping to 9th position in the 2017/2018 season[17].

On 28 September 2018 it was announced by the PSL that AmaZulu would be docked 6 points for failure to comply with a ruling made by Court of Arbitration for Sport(CAS) in September 2017[18]. The matter surrounded the illegal termination of the contract of a former player, Phinheas Nambandi, in 2014[19] Nambandi took the club to FIFA to contest the termination of his contract, with FIFA ruling that the termination was illegal and that the club were to pay an amount of R1‚086,000.00. AmaZulu appealed the decision at CAS, however, the decision was upheld. A year later the club had still failed to pay the outstanding figure to Phinheas Nambandi, this resulted in FIFA's Disciplinary Committee ruling that should the club not settle the debt with the player by 16 September 2018, 6 points would be deducted[20][21].

FacilitiesEdit

The club currently training out of the People's Park fields, next to Moses Mabhida Stadium[22]. AmaZulu have administrative offices inside the Moses Mabhida Stadium[23], whilst the technical team are based inside Prime High Performance Center. The club also utilize the performance facilities at Prime[24].

The club play their home games out of King Zwelithini Stadium, which is based in Umlazi.

PersonnelEdit

Club officialsEdit

Position Staff
Chairman Patrick Sokhela  
Managing Director Graham O'Connor  
General Manager Lunga Sokhela  
Administration Manager Peter O'Connor  
Team Manager Qedi Dlamini  
Media Relations Officer Brilliant Mkhathini  
Accounts Jane Stott  
Receptionist Lihle Dlamini  

Senior Team StaffEdit

Position Staff
Head Coach Cavin Johnson  [25]
Assistant Coach Alan Clarke  [26]
Second Assistant Coach Mabhuti Khanyeza  [27][28]
Goalkeeper Coach Davies Phiri  
Performance Analyst Pilela Maposa  
Club Scout Ayanda Mkhize  
Head of Medical Karel Du Toit  
Sports Scientist, Strength & Conditioning Coach Joshua Mervyn Smith  [29][30]
Masseur Rendani Manuku  
Kit Manager Mvikeli Shoba  
Assistant Kit Manager Simon "Timer" Ndebele  

Academy StaffEdit

Position Staff
Head of Youth Development Ronnie Moroka  [31]
Academy Manager Bukelani Mthembu  
Reserve Team Coach Ayanda Dlamini  [32]
U-19 Coach Belux Bukasa Kasongo  [33]
U-17 Coach Khaya Mngwengwe  
U-15 Coach Dinto Mkhize  
U-13 Coach Nhlanhla ‘’Shakes” Zwane  [34]
Academy Kit Manager Thuthukani Mthembu  

Head Coach HistoryEdit

As of 10 January 2019[35][36][37][38][39][40]
Name Date Appointed Date Dismissed Time in office Matches Points per match
Cavin Johnson   8 Aug 2017 - 581 Days 59 1,29
Joey Antipas   1 Jul 2016 8 Aug 2017 403 Days - -
Delron Buckley   (Interim) 18 Apr 2016 30 Jun 2016 73 Days - -
Steve Barker (soccer)   23 Nov 2014 18 Apr 2016 512 Days - -
Wilfred Mugeyi   (Interim) 15 Oct 2014 22 Nov 2014 38 Days 5 0,20
Craig Rosslee   29 Nov 2012 15 Oct 2014 685 Days 57 1,25
Roger Palmgren   19 Sep 2011 26 Nov 2012 434 Days 41 1,24
Manqoba Mngqithi   1 Jul 2010 19 Sep 2011 445 Days 36 0,89
Neil Tovey   1 Jul 2009 28 Jun 2010 362 Days 33 1,27
Clive Barker   1 Jul 2007 30 Jun 2009 730 Days 59 1,27
Júlio César Leal   31 Jan 2007 30 Jun 2007 150 Days - -
Reggie Shelembe   (Interim) 30 Nov 2006 30 Jan 2007 61 Days 7 1,00
Clive Barker   1 Jul 2006 29 Nov 2006 151 Days 10 0,6
Thabo Dladla   2005 - - - -
Keagan Mumba   2004 2004 - - -
Walter Rautmann   2003 - - - -
Zipho Dlangalala   & Thabo Dladla   (Interim) 2003 2003 - - -
Joseph Mukeba   2003 2003 - - -
Ramadhan Nsanzurwimo   2003 2003 - - -
Neil Tovey   2001 2002 - - -
Eddie Lewis (English footballer)   1999 2000 - - -
Gavin Lane   (Interim) 1999 1999 - - -
Clive Barker   1997 1999 - - -
Eoin Hand   1993 1993 - - -
Clive Barker   1991 1993 - - -
Clive Barker   1986 1987 - - -
Clive Barker   1974 1976 - - -

Club HonoursEdit

LeagueEdit

  • First Division Coastal Stream (2nd tier):
    • Winners: 2000/2001, 2002/2003
  • Mvela Platinum play-offs:
    • Winners(1st tier Relegation/Promotion play-offs): 2007

CupsEdit

  • Life Challenge Cup (now the Nedbank Cup):
    • Runners-up: 1972, 1973, 1974
  • Bobsave Superbowl (now the Nedbank Cup):
    • Runners-up: 1990

Minor cupsEdit

  • KwaZulu-Natal Premier’s Cup:

Club recordsEdit

Premier Soccer LeagueEdit

National First Division (2nd tier)Edit

Cup recordEdit

MTN 8Edit

Season Round Opposition Score
2012/2013 Quarter-Finals Moroka Swallows F.C. 0:2
2009/2010 Semi-Finals Lamontville Golden Arrows F.C. 1:4 (over two legs)

Telkom KnockoutEdit

Season Round Opposition Score
2018/2019 Quarter-Finals Orlando Pirates F.C. 1:3 (AET)
2017/2018 First round Kaizer Chiefs F.C. 0:3
2014/2015 Quarter-Finals Mamelodi Sundowns F.C. 1:2 (AET)
2013/2014 First round Free State Stars F.C. 0:2
2012/2013 Quarter-Finals Mamelodi Sundowns F.C. 0:2
2011/2012 First round Bidvest Wits F.C. 0:1
2010/2011 First round Kaizer Chiefs F.C. 0:2
2009/2010 Semi-Finals Ajax Cape Town F.C. 0:2
2008/2009 First round SuperSport United F.C. 0:1
2008/2009 Quarter-Finals Bloemfontein Celtic F.C. 0:1

Nedbank CupEdit

Season Round Opposition Score
2018/2019 Round of 32 Highlands Park F.C. 1:3 (Penalty shootout)
2017/2018 Round of 16 Ubuntu 2:3
2016/2017 Round of 32 Platinum Stars F.C. 2:3
2015/2016 Round of 32 Jomo Cosmos F.C. 3:4 (Penalty shootout)
2014/2015 Round of 32 Lamontville Golden Arrows F.C. 1:2
2013/2014 Round of 16 Bidvest Wits F.C. 1:4
2012/2013 Round of 32 Tembu Royals F.C. 1:2
2011/2012 Semi-Finals SuperSport United F.C. 0:3
2010/2011 Quarter-Finals Mpumalanga Black Aces F.C. 2:3
2009/2010 Final Bidvest Wits F.C. 0:3
2008/2009 Round of 32 Black Leopards F.C. 0:1
2007/2008 Semi-Finals Mamelodi Sundowns F.C. 0:1

First team squadEdit

As of 7 February 2019

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
1   GK Energy Murambadoro
4   MF Michael Morton
5   DF Marc Van Heerden
6   MF Butholezwe Ncube
7   FW Bongi Ntuli
9   FW Mhlengi Cele
10   FW Siyabonga Nomvethe
11   FW Ovidy Karuru
13   DF Sadat Ouro-Akoriko
14   MF Siyethemba Sithebe
15   FW Ayabulela Konqobe
16   MF Sduduzo Dlamini
17   DF Mbongeni Gumede (captain)
18   GK Moeneeb Josephs
19   MF Talent Chawapiwa
21   MF Charlie Hlalele
22   FW Augustine Ramphele
23   DF Tshepo Gumede
24   DF Thembela Sikhakhane
25   DF Phumlani Gumede
No. Position Player
27   DF Tapelo Nyongo
28   GK Siyabonga Mbatha
29   DF Sibusiso Mabiliso
33   MF Samuel Darpoh
34   MF Sphesihle Maduna
35   DF Boiki Modikaseng
40   DF Xolani Slawula
43   GK Neil Boshoff
45   FW Somila Ntsundwana
50   MF Nhlanhla Vilakazi

Shirt sponsor & kit manufacturerEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "AmaZulu appoint Johnson after Antipas axing". Retrieved 20 March 2018.
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  10. ^ http://www.amazulufc.net/the-club-2/
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External linksEdit