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Ernst Middendorp returns to Maritzburg United head coach job

Maritzburg United would have announced the appointment of Ernst Middendorp as their head coach for what will be his fourth spell at the Team of Choice.

The appointment follows the sacking of Eric Tinkler, after a poor start to the season left them rooted to the bottom of the PSL table.

Middendorp named Maritzburg United coach

Maritzburg Chairman Farook Kadodia says he is looking forward to having the experienced coach back at the club. Kadodia feels the German is the perfect appointment for the sticky situation which the team is currently in.

“We extend a warm welcome home to Ernst and we look forward to renewing what has always been an amicable relationship,” the Chairman said.

“At this point, after a tough start to the season, some stability is crucial. With Ernst knowing the club inside out, understanding the culture of the team, we are confident that he’s the best man for the job and will be able to hit the ground running.

“We believe his temperament, his intricate knowledge of our club, and his vast experience over many years in the Premier Soccer League, is what the team needs right now.

“We trust that together with Ernst, everyone at the club will work hard and pull together in the same direction to get this season back on track.”

United’s relationship with the former Kaizer Chiefs trainer started way back in November 2009, when he arrived for his first spell in Sleepy Hollow.

Ernst Middendorp Picture: Sydney Mahlangu/ BackpagePix

Back in Sleepy Hollow

Middendorp’s second stint came between January 2012 and October 2013, and the third and perhaps the most dramatic stint would take place from December 2015 until November 2016. 

During that third term in charge Middendorp memorably helped the team escape relegation on the final day of the 2015/16 campaign.

Maritzburg United have been a team of wildly fluctuating fortunes in their most recent run in the top-flight, struggling to hold onto their best players every time they are on the up and doing away with coaches who struggle to recover from those losses.

Tinkler had directed the team to a top-eight finish last term, but the team have lost all four of their PSL assignments this term and looked a shadow of the side that claimed seventh earlier this year.

Since last leaving United, Middendorp has worked at Bangkok United in Thailand, at Kaizer Chiefs, and had just begun a term at Saint George, the Ethiopian giants, when Kadodia came calling.

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