Culture: South Africa has a philosopher in witty football coach, Steve Komphela

Popularly known as ‘Bra Steve,’ the South African football coach is a social media and television favorite. Steve Komphela is widely appreciated and respected in South Africa and across the borders for his almost always hilarious-post match commentaries and interviews. He intelligently reviews his teams’ performances and delivers the analysis in metaphors and riddles. Supersport presenters, Carol and Robert Marawa have always joked about how one needs to bring a thesaurus whenever they interview the philosophical coach. What I find particularly striking about Bra Steve is that he seems not be intentional about being amusing, he delivers his messages with a stern face and leaves some rolling on the floor laughing and most, reflecting on the deep lessons coded in the highly consumable speeches.

Here are some of Komphela’s famous quotes:

“We didn’t play well, but we won, we now have to wait for the next team. We go on; we hope to improve from here. Statistics are like a bikini, they don’t reveal everything.”

“If you go to the graveyard and haunt the sleeping, the spirits shall come to haunt you. And this is what transpired. They needed to come up, and it was at our expense.”

Steve Komphela is a South African Football Coach Mamelodi Sundowns Orlando Pirates and Kaizer Chiefs
The PSL has rough seas and there are plenty of sharks – teams with strong financial muscle. We have already gone through two dangerous sharks. And on Saturday we face the Great White Shark. It will be very difficult, one has to acknowledge their strength but we confidently move to Saturday hoping that by the end of the match we will be smiling.
— Komphela ahead of his side’s Nedbank Cup semi-final against Mamelodi Sundowns

Steve Komphela has enjoyed quite a relatively successful career as a player and mostly as a manager. He has coached a plethora of South African clubs including Maritzburg United, Free State Stars, Platinum Stars, South Africa U-23 and South African national team as a caretaker coach. Komphela who is also a teacher by profession has recently left the Kaizer Chiefs coaching job after as a result of ever-mounting pressure from the fans.