HIGHLANDERS have awarded their players an increase in bonuses as an incentive in their quest for an unprecedented fifth successive Premier Soccer League title, IndependentSp
ort has gathered.
Bosso players who spoke on condition of anonymity said morale in the camp was high following a recent increase in winning bonuses, which sources put at 50%.
“Morale in camp is very high and we are all raring to go. We were recently given an added incentive by the ex-ecutive when they increased our winning bonuses,” said one senior player.
Highlanders manager, Enerst Sibanda, refused to shed light on the matter. “It’s very difficult to speak on somebody’s salary. Speak to the players themselves,” said Sibanda.
The players spoke this week ahead of a titanic clash against traditional rivals Dynamos at Barbour-fields Stadium on Sunday. Obse-rvers have said the match will give Bosso the ultimate test in their campaign.
True to the quality of champions, Highlanders have only suffered one defeat in 15 outings.
Coach Willard Khumalo on Wednesday guided Bosso to an easy 3-0 victory over neighbours Sundowns at Barbourfields Stadium. They moved into second position on the log with 36 points, the same as leaders AmaZulu, who have however played three matches more than Bosso.
But Highlanders and their legion of passionate followers will be the first to admit that matches against Dynamos have always been tough.
“It will be a difficult game,” Sibanda acknowledged. “The going is getting tougher, but we will be taking each game as it comes. We are therefore ready for Dynamos.”
Guided by Zambian mentor Keegan Mumba, the Glamour Boys have defied the perennial instability rocking them due to leadership controversies to put themselves in a good position for the title.
The popular Harare side are fourth on the log with 32 points. This week they were docked three points for the use of ineligible striker Edmore Mufema in a match against Lancashire Steel, which they won 2-1 a fortnight ago.
But with midfielder Francis Chandida in inspired form, Mumba will be hoping to erase the setback by coming out of Barbourfields Stadium with maximum points.
For Bosso, industrious midfielder Richard Choruma and captain Bekithemba Ndlovu as well as the fast maturing Honour Gombami, will be expected to pull the strings in the middle of the pack and create chances for the bustling striking duo of Chipo Tsodzo and Chewe Mulenge.
Championship hopefuls Caps United, whose aspirations were dealt a blow by Motor Action last weekend with a 2-1 defeat, face another daunting task when they take on Black Rhinos at the National Sports Stadium on Sunday.
Having posted crucial away victories to Wankie, AmaZulu and Sundowns, the coast appeared pretty clear for Makepekepe to clinch their first championship in seven years. However their bogey side Motor Action derailed them when they ended their fine run.
Although Rhinos have been going through a bad patch they are tipped to rise to the occasion and give Caps a torrid time on Sunday as they have often done in the past.
Charismatic striker Maxwell Dube and combative Warriors midfielder Lazarus Muhoni could capitalise on the holes in the porous Caps defence.
The return of strikers Brian Badza and Walter Chuma from suspension should give the Caps followers a ray of hope.
Makepekepe fans will also be hoping for the return of Warriors goalkeeper Energy Murambadoro who has been nursing an ankle injury. Blessing Makunike and Leonard Tsipa will be hoping for improved performances from last week when they featured for Caps for the first time since returning from Yugoslavia.
Sunday: Caps United v Black Rhinos (NSS), Highlanders v Dynamos (Barbourfields).