It is still early days in the season but pressure has already mounted on two of Harare’s competitive Premier Soccer League sides, Dynamos and Harare City, who clash this afternoon at the National Sports Stadium.
BY MICHAEL MADYIRA
Harare will reverberate as DeMbare coach Kalisto Pasuwa seeks his first home win of the season while his opposite number Bigboy Mawiwi is battling to save his job with a first win of the term.
In the sides’ four league meetings since City’s debut season in 2012, Dynamos have won twice, City once while the other match ended in a draw.
But that might not count this afternoon with Dynamos appearing cursed at the National Sports Stadium where they have failed to beat AS Vita, ZPC Kariba and FC Platinum.
“That is an area we have been working on to start collecting points at home,” said Pasuwa.
“The National Sports Stadium is a ground we recommended to use all-year and we should feel at home there.”
Pasuwa admitted pressure was mounting in his camp but stated that it was not a unique problem to them.
“I think every team is under pressure,” said Pasuwa.
“What counts now is the mental strength of a team, approach and attitude to tackle games. Harare City are one of those opponents that have been tough for us and we should approach them in a positive manner.”
Another worry for Pasuwa is the failure by his strikers to find the target which was glaringly exposed in last week’s 3-1 win over Bantu Rovers where it had to take defender Sydney Linyama, defensive linkman Devon Chafa and winger Cliff Sekete to score.
Missing Sekete, Tawanda Muparati and Masimba Mambare due to injuries, Pasuwa however welcomes back menacing midfielder Ronald Chitiyo and Walter Mukanga.
But that is far from Mawiwi’s predicament.
While the Harare City coach is trying to banish the three straight losses he has suffered so far, he has found himself with depleted arsenal in his war chest.
Star midfielder Nathan Ziwini is yet to fully recover from a groin injury and only started light training on Friday.
Goalkeeper Maxwell Nyamupangedengu has a nagging knee while leftback Munyaradzi Kunyarimwe is complaining about his ankle with striker Martin Vengesai having developed a lump on his head.
“We thought some of these guys would recover in time but that has not been the case,” said Mawiwi.
“They were absent in the ZPC Kariba game and my fear is their absence will affect us again. This has affected our rhythm but I am sure we will manage. The losses have affected our morale but whom do we blame besides ourselves? No one.”
Meanwhile, Highlanders and Hwange clash at Barbourfields. Chipanagono will be looking forward to end Bosso’s league dominance since the arrival of Zambia coach Kelvin Kaindu at the beginning of the 2012 season.
Triangle United FC vs Chicken Inn FC Gibbo @ 1500hrs
Buffaloes FC vs ZPC Kariba FC Sakubva @ 1500hrs
Highlanders vs Hwange Barbourfields @ 1500 hrs
Dynamos vs Harare City