AmaZulu appoint Johnson after Antipas axing

Cavin Johnson during his tenure as Platinum Stars coach Sydney Mahlangu /BackpagePix

AmaZulu have sprung a surprise on the eve of the new Premier Soccer League season by axing Zimbabwean coach Joey Antipas and replacing him with Cavin Johnson.

Antipas has led Usuthu through their pre-season, but the more experienced Johnson, who has had two spells with Platinum Stars and also had a stint at SuperSport United, has been preferred to take them into their return season in the South African top-flight.

"We have reached an agreement to terminate their working relationship for the coming season (by) mutual consent," a statement by the Durban club read.

"Former Platinum Stars and SuperSport United head coach, Cavin Johnson has been appointed as replacement with immediate effect.

"An announcement regarding the assistant coach role will be made by the end of the week."

AmaZulu management were concerned over Antipas' lack of experience in the South African top-flight and had been planning a change for some time.

Antipas led Usuthu to fifth in the National First Division last season, but the club gained their place in the Premier League after purchasing the status of newly-promoted Thanda Royal Zulu.

Johnson has vast experience in youth football at Ajax Cape Town, Mamelodi Sundowns and SAFA's School of Excellence, where he is credited with grooming the talent of Steven Pienaar.

He led Platinum Stars to surprise second and third-place finishes in the PSL in the last four years, but was axed in June this year.