The latest FIFA calendar has provided Stuart Baxter with yet another reality check on how rough a ride his second stint as Kaizer Chiefs head coach has been.
Sitting down in position 12 with just a single win from the opening six league games, Chiefs’ results prove just how much they have been battling to dust off the hangover of the struggles that they went through locally last season under Gavin Hunt.
The scary reality for Chiefs is the prospect of a seventh consecutive trophyless season which appears likely considering what is happening with the team from Naturena.
Scroll through the gallery to see the six Kaizer Chiefs players aiming to make an impact on the international stage
Only two trophies are now left for AmaKhosi to play this season after they were bundled out of the MTN8 the moment they knocked on the door in the first round.
Trophy number one is the league title for which their prospects don’t look encouraging.
With only a fifth of the season played, Chiefs already found themselves 10 points behind champions Mamelodi Sundowns and the truth is that toppling the champions from the top will be a long ask for Baxter.
The Brazilians are not generous with points like Chiefs which is why they have only lost once in the league since the beginning of last season and remain unbeaten this term.
Besides the league, Chiefs will still have the Nedbank Cup to play for which is a toss of the coin competition considering that their progress will be determined by what the draw throws on their path.
Chiefs have not won the league since 2013 which was during Baxter’s first spell in charge.
The last trophy that Chiefs also won was the 2014/15 league which was also overseen by the Briton.
What is of concern about this season is the slow pace at which Chiefs have started despite all the signings that they made following the lifting of the transfer ban imposed by FIFA.
The new signings list has had Sibusiso Mabiliso, Njabulo Ngcobo, Austin Dube, Kgaogelo Sekgota, Keagan Dolly, Cole Alexander, Sifiso Hlanti, Brandon Peterson and Phathutshedzo Nange but they all haven’t improved the team’s fortunes as yet.
For now, the position that the club occupies on the standings is as embarrassing as the 4-1 defeat that they suffered to Royal AM.
Baxter knows all too well that six points from six games is reason to worry and way below the standards at the club.
Without solutions the season will end with 28 editions of the six competitions that they have been involved in having been played since they were last lifted silverware – the longest that they have ever had to wait to win a trophy.
What could bring further pain for AmaKhosi is that Sundowns could as well stretch their rule at the top in the PSL era trophy this term.
Sundowns have now 21 trophies (Chiefs have 20) in the PSL era years with eleven won in the period since Chiefs last went up the podium to lift a trophy.