The man has earned himself the tag “hair dryer master” after the famous Manchester United coach Sir Alex Ferguson who is popularly known for “hair dryer” treatment on players each time they underperform.
Sir Alex’s management skills have always come to the fore when building a new team or while managing a team full of stars. His typical and well-known rants ensures no player gets bigger than the club.
Former United player Mark Hughes coined the name “hair dryer treatment” to describe Ferguson’s habit of dishing out fearsome “decibel-busting rollicking” to his players.
Like Ferguson, Chitembwe usually comes up with rants targeted at his players at half time or after a match if they fail to perform to his satisfaction.
Though risking being unpopular with the players at most of the clubs he has coached so far, Chitembwe does not hesitate to confront players that fail to toe the line and is not apologetic about it.
The gaffer who started his coaching career as an assistant to Charles Mhlauri said at times players need that kind of treatment.
“It is every professional coach’s will to have players at training on time everyday and giving their best. What do you expect me to do if players go against instructions? I have to give them whatever they call it, ‘hair dryer’.
“We usually have problems with the so-called best players at clubs. They do not want to train but hope to have first team places.
“Look at what has been happening at Manchester United where Ferguson cut ties with some of the best players whom he felt were growing big-headed,” Chitembwe added.
The 1994-95 Premier League season could well be remembered as the hair dryer season. Sir Alex had issues with three of his players which led to their ouster from the club. The players in question were Andrei Kanchelskis, Paul Ince and ironically, the man who coined the term “hair dryer”, Hughes.
Sir Alex also had problems with players like Dwight York, Jaap Stam, Roy Keane and David Beckham and sold them despite ther popularity with the club’s fans.
Recently Chitembwe had a training burst up with new singing Chris Samakwere whom he almost showed the exit door before the season had even started.
“People can say whatever they want about my coaching ways but I am one coach who has been successful in my coaching career. After coaching CAPS United I joined Shabanie Mine which was an average team but I managed to turn around their fortunes,” he said.
“I then took over Kiglon which was fresh from Division One and we made a mark in the top flight league. Kiglon led the log standings for four weeks before producing two players that were part of the national team.”
Chitembwe’s romance with CAPS
After taking charge of Shabanie Mine, Chitembwe bounced back at CAPS United where he had cut his teeth in terms of his coaching career.
“I then came back to CAPS United where I managed to build a team that had six players in the national team that we later sold to South African clubs. The team advanced more than any CAPS United team in the Confederations Cup and we won a number of local cups that year.
“I had to come back again at CAPS United last year when they were in the relegation zone and we managed to rise to a better finish. We are leaving no stone unturned in the preparation for the forthcoming season,” he said.