I simply had to leave Arrows – Letsoaka
It was the short, one-year contract that former Safa technical director Serame Letsoaka had with Lamontville Golden Arrows that ultimately led to his resignation.
Letsoaka confirmed he had a oneyear deal with Arrows and the uncertainty about his future put a strain on his family. He could not even register his children in Durban schools or relocate his entire family.
“For me, it was not about money. I had a one-year contract with Arrows until the end of June, but what next after that?” he asked.
“I could not wait until then, and this put a strain on the family. Do I relocate my family and kids to Durban, and what if my contract is not renewed? These were some of the things I had to consider and I do not regret the decision I took [to leave Arrows].”
But the coach, who did a sterling job at the coastal outfit, said he was not bitter about the turn of events at Arrows, as it had turned out to be a blessing in disguise. The 52-year-old said that after his resignation letter was posted on the club’s Twitter and Facebook platforms, he received a call from Bloemfontein Celtic.
“It was actually a blessing in disguise, as it helped me to get another job. I had no job when I tendered my resignation. Although I was not happy when it was posted on social media, it helped me,” said Letsoaka.
Letsoaka’s predecessor, Shaun Bartlett, also failed to have his contract with Arrows renewed despite him winning the National First Division and promoting the club to the Premier Soccer League (PSL). But Letsoaka said Bartlett’s treatment had nothing to do with his decision.
“It never even crossed my mind,” he said.
He denied that he quit because of the Celtic job. “I had contemplated quitting for some time, long before the Celtic job became available,” said Letsoaka.
“I just couldn’t leave the club in the lurch, as there were games coming thick and fast and it was going to be unprofessional of me to leave them in the middle of the programme.
“I did what I did in the best interest of the club because of the break, and I think I gave them enough time to search for a new coach.”
Letsoaka said he had since apologised to Arrows boss Mato Madlala for the manner in which he left the Durban club.
“I thank the chairperson for giving me the opportunity to coach in the PSL and I will always be grateful for that. I have since apologised to her for the manner in which I left and we have sorted things out.”
He said it was important to maintain good relationships with club bosses and never burn bridges.
Madlala confirmed the parties had spoken and said it was now water under the bridge. She said that what they shared was confidential.
“Life goes on now,” said Madlala. “He told me what he told me and that’s it. He didn’t tell me about those uncertainties when we spoke and said it came from other people, not him. We have also moved on.”
CONTENT Serame Letsoaka says he
and Lamontville Golden Arrows harbour no ill-feeling