Stuart Baxter

Stuart William Baxter (born 16 August 1953) is a British football manager and former player who most recently managed South African Premier Soccer League side Kaizer Chiefs.

Stuart Baxter
Stuart Baxter.jpg
Baxter in 2009
Personal information
Full name Stuart William Baxter[1]
Date of birth (1953-08-16) 16 August 1953 (age 69)
Place of birth Wolverhampton, England
Position(s) Midfielder
Club information
Current team
Youth career
1971–1973 Preston North End
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1973–1975 Preston North End 41 (1)
1975 Morecambe 1 (0)
1975 Dundee United 0 (0)
1976–1977 Stockport County 4 (1)
1978–1979 South Melbourne FC 50 (22)
1980 Landskrona BoIS 26 (1)
1981 Helsingborgs IF 16 (7)
1982 South Melbourne FC 20 (11)
1983 San Diego Sockers 27 (12)
1983–1984 Örebro SK 41 (19)
Total 226 (97)
Managerial career
1985 Örebro SK
1986 IF Skarp
1987 Vitória Setubal
1988–1991 Halmstads BK
1992–1994 Sanfrecce Hiroshima
1995–1997 Vissel Kobe
1998–2000 AIK
2001 Lyn
2002–2004 England Under-19
2004–2005 South Africa
2006 Vissel Kobe
2006–2007 Helsingborgs IF
2008–2010 Finland
2012–2015 Kaizer Chiefs
2015 Gençlerbirliği
2016–2017 SuperSport United
2017–2019 South Africa
2020–2021 Odisha
2021–2022 Kaizer Chiefs
*Club domestic league appearances and goals

Born in England of Scottish parentage, and brought up in both countries, Baxter played professionally for a number of clubs in England, Scotland, Australia, Sweden and in the United States. He has previously managed clubs in Sweden, Norway, Portugal, Japan, South Africa, Turkey and India.

In international football, he has managed South Africa twice as well as Finland and the England under-19 team.

Early lifeEdit

Stuart Baxter was born in Wolverhampton, Staffordshire, England, on 16 August 1953.[1] His Scottish father, Bill Baxter, was a professional footballer then playing for Wolverhampton Wanderers and later for Aston Villa. Stuart initially grew up in England, while his father was coaching at Aston Villa,[2] before the family moved to Scotland, where Bill had managerial jobs with East Fife and Raith Rovers. During this time, Stuart was educated at Buckhaven High School in Fife.[3] As a result of his background, Baxter is variously described as being English,[4] Scottish[3][5] or an Anglo-Scot[6] in the media; he has commented on his identity, saying, "If I'm mentioned for a job in Scotland, they call me a Scot. If I'm mentioned for a job in England, they call me an Englishman. I call myself a European".[7] He has also described himself as "a mongrel" and "proud to be British, although I feel more European".[2]

Playing careerEdit

Baxter began his playing career with Preston North End in 1973. He joined Scottish club Dundee United in October 1975, but was released the following month after playing only for the reserve team.[8] He then returned to England with Stockport County. Baxter then moved to Australia, Sweden and the United States respectively with South Melbourne FC, Helsingborgs IF and San Diego Sockers. His playing career ended in 1983.

While playing for South Melbourne, Baxter was called up to train with the Australia national team,[9] and played for Australia in unofficial matches against a Queensland XI and Partizan Belgrade in 1979.[10] As he had not obtained Australian citizenship, he had to be withdrawn from the squad to play against New Zealand when the match was classified as an official international.[11]

Coaching careerEdit

Baxter returned to Scandinavia to begin his coaching career; he worked with Örebro SK's youth team. In 1986, he was appointed manager of minor Norwegian side IF Skarp. The following year he landed a larger managerial role with Portuguese team Vitória de Setúbal before returning to Sweden for a three-year stint at Halmstads BK between 1988 and 1991. In his first year with Halmstad he guided them to promotion to the Allsvenskan but the club was relegated at the end of his tenure. Baxter moved to Japan to first coach Sanfrecce Hiroshima, between 1992 and 1994, and then Vissel Kobe, in 1997. He took over as manager of Kobe only days after an earthquake caused devastation in the city and spent two weeks living in a makeshift caravan in the club car park.


In 1998, Baxter was bought back to Sweden by AIK, where he guided them to the Swedish championship. Having qualified for the UEFA Champions League, Baxter took AIK into the group stages where the Swedish champions played against some of Europe's largest teams, such as Barcelona, Arsenal and Fiorentina. Unsurprisingly, AIK finished bottom of the group. After two years, he moved to Norwegian side Lyn Oslo.

England U-19, South Africa, Vissel Kobe and HelsingborgEdit

Baxter was hired by the Football Association to coach the England Under-19 team in 2002. After two years, he was hired as South Africa's manager. As guests of the 2005 CONCACAF Gold Cup, he led South Africa to the Quarter Finals before being eliminated via a penalty shootout by Panama.[12] By autumn 2005, he quit this role having failed to qualify for the 2006 World Cup. He later had another short spell at Vissel Kobe before moving back to Helsingborg, this time as manager in 2006. He took the Swedish side past the group stages of the UEFA Cup in 2007 but he resigned at the end of the year.


At the beginning of 2008, Baxter was appointed manager of Finland national team on a two-year contract.[13] In January 2009 it was announced that he had signed an extended contract that would keep him in charge of the Finland team through the 2012 European Championships campaign.[14]

In June 2010, Baxter was strongly linked with a possible director of football position at Celtic to work alongside new manager Neil Lennon,[15] however these hopes came to nothing as Celtic were unable to agree a settlement for Baxter's services with the Football Association of Finland.[16][17]

During the autumn of 2010, the Finland national team lost important matches against Moldova and Hungary, which led to widespread hopes for Baxter's resignation made public by the national team supporters, the media and the country's leading football pundits.[18] It turned out, too, that Baxter had failed to establish communicative relationships with some of the key players in the squad, favouring certain players instead.[19] Baxter, however, refused to resign, attacking journalists for not understanding football well enough in order to evaluate his performance as a manager.[20] The Football Association of Finland did not sack Baxter either, citing, e.g., financial reasons.[21] The Finland national team's position in FIFA World Rankings sank from 33 to 86 under Baxter's guidance[22] In November 2010, The Football Association of Finland announced that Baxter would no longer continue in his job as a manager of the national team.[23]

Kaizer ChiefsEdit

On 7 May 2012, Baxter was announced as the new manager of South African club, Kaizer Chiefs.[24] He started his duties in June 2012. In the first season under his management, Amakhosi completed the double, finishing first in the 2012–13 Premier Soccer League and defeating Supersport United 1–0 to win the Nedbank Cup.[25]

The 2013–14 South African Premier Division campaign ended in disappointment with the soweto based side failing to register a trophy despite occupying the top position in the league for the majority of the season. See Log for the previous League campaign:[26]

Chiefs, at the beginning of the 2014–15 South African Premier Division were drawn against Mpumalanga Black Aces in their first game of the cup competition the MTN 8,[27] a match which they won 4–0 to progress to the semi-finals where they beat the defending champions Platinum Stars 2–0 and 3–0 respectively in both legs to set up a final with their Soweto counterparts and rivals Orlando Pirates. During this period, Baxter led chiefs to nine wins in six of their league matches and also their three cup matches leading up to the final. Amakhosi's 10th victory in as many matches in all competitions this term was inspired by an unlikely source, captain Tefu Mashamaite, who wore the armband in Itumeleng Khune's absence and vindicated coach Baxter's decision to give him the role ahead of the more favoured Reneilwe Letsholonyane. Mashamaite, who captained his former club Bidvest Wits to the Nedbank Cup title in 2010, headed home the winner just before the half-hour mark against a Pirates side that seemed hypnotized for the better part of this match [28] Baxter won his third trophy at the club in just his third season to start off yet another season with the MTN 8 trophy on Saturday 20 September 2014.

Baxter completed his second league and cup double with Kaizer Chiefs that season, after reclaiming the PSL league title from Sundowns.[29]

On 2 June 2015, Baxter left Kaizer Chiefs.[30]


On 9 June 2015, Baxter joined Turkish club Genclerbirligi,[31][32] but his contract was mutually terminated on 24 August 2015 after defeats in the first two games of the 2015–16 season.[33][34]

SuperSport UnitedEdit

On 27 January 2016, Baxter was signed mid-season by SuperSport United.[35] That season Baxter led his side to Nedbank Cup glory.[36] The following season (2016/2017) would see Supersport United retain their Nedbank Cup trophy, beating Orlando Pirates again in the final.[37]

Return to South AfricaEdit

On 4 May 2017, Baxter was named as South Africa coach for a second time, replacing Ephraim Mashaba, who was sacked in December 2016.[38] Under his guidance Bafana Bafana qualified for the 2019 AFCON tournament, and beat tournament favourites and hosts, Egypt in the round of 16, before being knocked out by Nigeria.[39][40] He resigned in August 2019.[41]

Odisha FCEdit

On 19 June 2020, Baxter was announced as the head coach of Indian Super League club Odisha FC, on a two-year contract.[42] However, he was sacked in February 2021 after complaining during a post-match interview about the refereeing in a defeat, saying that his players "would have to rape someone or get raped himself if he was going to get a penalty.”[43]

Kaizer Chiefs returnEdit

In June 2021, Baxter rejoined Kaizer Chiefs for a second spell as head coach.[44] On 17 July 2021, he coached Kaizer Chiefs in their first Champions League Final which they lost 3–0 against Al Ahly.[45]


As well as his father Bill, Baxter has a son, Lee, who is also a former professional football player and now a goalkeeping-coach.



Sanfrecce Hiroshima



Kaizer Chiefs

SuperSport United

South Africa


See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b "Stuart Baxter". Barry Hugman's Footballers. Retrieved 26 March 2017.
  2. ^ a b Gordon, Phil (9 May 1999). "Football: In fear of Angels with dirty tactics". The Independent. London. Archived from the original on 25 May 2022. Retrieved 7 May 2017.
  3. ^ a b "I'm free, Baxter tells Scots". The Scotsman. Edinburgh. 17 November 2001. Retrieved 7 May 2017.
  4. ^ Tongue, Steve (12 November 2000). "The foreign coach born in England, made in Sweden". The Independent. London. Archived from the original on 25 May 2022. Retrieved 7 May 2017.
  5. ^ Kyle, Gregor (9 November 2015). "The top Scottish football bosses who took on the world: 12 Scots who have managed overseas". Daily Record. Glasgow. Retrieved 7 May 2017.
  6. ^ Moore, Glenn (11 May 2013). "English managers are becoming poor relations of the top flight". The Independent. London. Archived from the original on 25 May 2022. Retrieved 7 May 2017.
  7. ^ James, Stuart (26 March 2009). "Baxter eager to test himself on his long coach journey round the world". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 7 May 2017.
  8. ^ Gracie, Steve (2009). The Rise of the Terrors. Dundee: Arabest Publishing. p. 187. ISBN 978-0-9558341-1-0.
  9. ^ Hammond, Tom (6 May 1979). "Soccer Pitch". The Sydney Morning Herald. p. 95. Retrieved 7 May 2017 – via  
  10. ^ "Socceroo B Matches for 1979". OzFootball. Retrieved 7 May 2017.
  11. ^ Hammond, Tom (6 June 1979). "Wilson answers Soccer call". The Sydney Morning Herald. p. 42. Retrieved 7 May 2017 – via  
  12. ^ "Bafana knocked out of Concacaf Cup". 18 July 2005. Archived from the original on 19 July 2020.
  13. ^ "Stuart Baxter Huuhkajien päävalmentajaksi". (in Finnish). Suomen Palloliitto. Archived from the original on 25 May 2011. Retrieved 12 May 2011.
  14. ^ "Stuart Baxter jatkaa Huuhkajien luotsina". (in Finnish). Suomen Palloliitto. Archived from the original on 25 May 2011. Retrieved 12 May 2011.
  15. ^ "Celtic approach Finland coach Stuart Baxter". BBC Sport. 4 June 2010. Retrieved 12 May 2011.
  16. ^ "Celtic Football Club statement". Celtic FC. Archived from the original on 7 October 2010. Retrieved 12 May 2011.
  17. ^ "Celtic concede defeat over Stuart Baxter advisory role". BBC Sport. 3 August 2010. Retrieved 12 May 2011.
  18. ^ "Jalkapallofanit ja vaikuttajat pettyneitä liiton Baxter-ratkaisuun". (in Finnish). HS. Retrieved 12 May 2011.
  19. ^ "Eremenkon kritiikki vaikeuttaa Baxterin asemaa". (in Finnish). MTV3. Retrieved 12 May 2011.
  20. ^ "Baxter hermostui toimittajille – lue koko tilitys!". (in Finnish). Iltalehti. Retrieved 12 May 2011.
  21. ^ "Baxter jatkaa Huuhkajien peräsimessä". (in Finnish). HS. Retrieved 12 May 2011.
  22. ^ "Suomi vajosi futislilliputtien joukkoon". (in Finnish). HS. Retrieved 12 May 2011.
  23. ^ "Ratkaisu tyydytti kaikkia osapuolia". (in Finnish). Palloliitto. Retrieved 12 May 2011.
  24. ^ "Stuart Baxter has been named the new Kaizer Chiefs coach". KickOff. 7 May 2012.
  25. ^ "Amakhosi secure trophy double". Independent Online. 25 May 2013. Retrieved 27 May 2013.
  26. ^ "Standings ABSA Premiership 2013-2014 - Football". Eurosport Australia.
  27. ^ "Chiefs thrash Black Aces | IOL".
  28. ^ "Chiefs back to winning ways | IOL".
  29. ^ "Kaizer Chiefs Are the 2014/15 Absa Premiership Champions". 22 April 2015.
  30. ^ "TimesLIVE". TimesLIVE.
  31. ^ "Gençlerbirliği, İskoç teknik direktör Baxter'a emanet" (in Turkish). Fanatik. Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  32. ^ "Baxter Joins Gençlerbirliği". African Football. 9 June 2015. Retrieved 28 September 2015.
  33. ^ "7İlk giden Baxter oldu!". (in Turkish). ntvspor. 24 August 2015. Retrieved 28 September 2015.
  34. ^ "Baxter ve ekibine teşekkürler" (in Turkish). Gençlerbirliği. Retrieved 26 August 2015.
  35. ^ "Soccer Laduma, Kapeluschnik: SuperSport Wanted Baxter Pre-Chiefs". Soccer Laduma. Retrieved 28 January 2016.
  36. ^ "SuperSport win Nedbank Cup title".
  37. ^ "SuperSport rout Pirates to retain Nedbank Cup". 24 June 2017.
  38. ^ "Stuart Baxter named South Africa coach for second time". BBC Sport. 4 May 2017. Retrieved 5 May 2017.
  39. ^ "Stuart Baxter names final Bafana Bafana Afcon squad".
  40. ^ "Renewed calls for Stuart Baxter's head after Bafana Bafana lose to Nigeria". TimesLIVE.
  41. ^ "Stuart Baxter steps down as South Africa coach". BBC Sport. 2 August 2019.
  42. ^ Sportstar, Team. "Start Baxter appointed as Odisha FC coach". Sportstar. Retrieved 19 June 2020.
  43. ^ "Stuart Baxter sacked by Indian football club Odisha after using rape analogy". The Guardian. The Associated Press. 2 February 2021. Retrieved 2 February 2021.{{cite news}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  44. ^ "Kaizer Chiefs confirm Stuart Baxter as new head coach". Kick Off. 9 June 2021. Retrieved 27 June 2021.
  45. ^ "Egypt's Al Ahly beat Kaizer Chiefs 3-0 to win record tenth African crown". BBC Sport. 18 July 2021.
  46. ^ "Bafana Bafana win Plate final at 2018 COSAFA Cup". 8 June 2018.
  47. ^ "Bafana finish fifth at Cosafa Cup after slender win over Namibia in plate final". TimesLIVE.
  48. ^ "Bafana beat Zambia to win Four Nations". Sport.

External linksEdit