The axe has finally fallen on Platinum Stars as the Rustenburg-based outfit were relegated to the National First Division (NFD) following a gruelling campaign filled with great instability and controversy.
Only recently was he uncertainty regarding the ownership finally put to bed taken as a consortium which included head coach Roger de Sa, acquired the struggling Phokeng-based outfit.
But despite the high hopes for the club since the takeover, De Sa and company have failed to keep Stars in the elite league.
The current situation at Stars is not only an indictment on what has transpired at the club over the last year, but it is also an eye opener considering that it was about just two seasons ago when they finished third on the PSL log and earned the right to compete with some of Africa’s best teams in the Caf Confederation Cup.
Now with their relegation confirmed, the club will have to do a thorough introspection of how they aim to move forward. After Johannesburg-based company Rawat Petroleum took over Dikwena, there has been much talk over whether or not the club would relocate, with De Sa’s only assurance being that they would remain in Rustenburg until the end of the season.
However, with Dikwena now heading to the NFD, there could be massive changes which would come as a blow as the club has been one of the lucky enough teams to benefit from the legacy that has been left by the 2010 Fifa World Cup.
This certainly makes Stars’ decline even more disappointing as they were a club with not only an abundance of talent but with a training base that even the finest clubs in the world would be proud of.
Most importantly, speculation will now grow regarding the future of De Sa as head coach.
While the former Bafana Bafana international may be a part-owner in the club, his recent record does not instil much confidence as Stars have only won five times in all competitions since he took over in September of 2017, and if he does stay on, comparisons are likely to be made with current Jomo Cosmos coach and owner Jomo Sono.
De Sa though, will need to earn his stripes in the lower division, and a rise back up the South African football ladder will not be easy - just ask Moroka Swallows and Santos among other former PSL teams.
De Sa will also need to find an identity for his team, something which has eluded his side. Also with them dropping down to the NFD whether or not important players such as Robert Ng’ambi and Vuyo Mere among others will remain, will be another headache for De Sa to think about in the off-season.
Nonetheless, De Sa himself might want to sit down and reconsider his future. The 53-year-old has struggled to replicate the success he achieved at Orlando Pirates and after experiencing short stints at Maritzburg United and Ajax Cape Town.
Perhaps a decision to move into a more technical role could be beneficial. After all, it was De Sa who during his Bidvest Wits days who took the risk to breathe younger footballers into the first team this is what earned the 2002/03 PSL Coach of the Season award, and a technical director role could see him once again unearth some great talent and set have Stars reaching for moon once again.
Lastly, De Sa has never coached in the NFD before. When he relegated Wits in the mid-2000's, he left and joined the then PSL giants, Santos, and return to the Braamfontein-based club soon after their promotion back into the PSL two years later.
Will he do the same this time around or will he will go down with Dikwena and try to bring it back since he's a part-owner? Only time will tell.