Some may say juju triumphed over Christianity, but it was an afternoon in which Harare City reinforced their reputation as the Chibuku Cup kings with a second crown in four years following an emphatic victory over How Mine at Rufaro Stadium yesterday.
BY MUNYARADZI MADZOKERE
Harare City ….. (0) 3
How Mine ……. (0) 1
In the run-up to the final, How Mine coach Kelvin Kaindu had suggested that Harare City was a team that believes in juju and would play their football at night on the eve of the final.
And he grabbed the headlines by cleaning the goalposts just before kick-off yesterday, which he claimed were dirty, suggesting it’s typical of African football.
Yet, it was not enough to avoid three goals in an eight- minute blitz by the Harare side in the second half. The win consequently booked the Sunshine Boys a ticket to represent the country in the CAF Confederations Cup next year.
Edwin Madhanhanga opened the scoring for Harare City in the 66th minute before striker William Manondo scored twice in two minutes — in the 73rd and 74th minutes — ending the match as a contest.
Veteran midfielder Peter Moyo grabbed the consolation for the gold miners later in the match.
For some odd reason, Harare City coach Philani “Beefy” Ncube had wanted to be drawn against his former side How Mine, whom he said he would beat at any venue throughout the course of the competition.
His wish was granted in the final. How Mine dominated the match but were beaten convincingly.
Kaindu admitted to other forces at play in the defeat he described as painful.
“I have said that this is a city council team and I believe one of the jobs of the city council is to make sure the environment is clean and I can tell you it was not. It’s only at Rufaro where you find dirty goalposts. They are dirty and I had to change my career and start wiping the goalposts before the game started. That’s how football is and they scored all the three goals in the same goal, so it’s very difficult African football and I also think the sponsors can help with that,” Kaindu said.
“Very painful, football is about goals and we could have wrapped up this game in the first half. I think it was unfair for the Premier Soccer League to have given Harare City the advantage to host the final at home.”
Like a Cup final it was, the match started off at a cracking pace with the visitors taking the game to the Sunshine Boys.
How Mine had the first real chance to surge ahead halfway through the first half when Tatenda Munditi fumbled Pasca Manhanga’s stinging drive from outside the box.
But Munditi recovered to clean up the mess and avert the danger.
Harare City, who were relying on breaks, had a couple of opportunities from set pieces in dangerous positions, but Madhanhanga failed to find the target.
In the end, a first half stalemate seemed fair.
How Mine began the second half the same way they did the first and were unlucky when a half volley by Tinashe Makanda fizzed past the upright post.
But it was the Harare side who took the lead against the run of play.
Martin Vengesai broke free on the right flank and sent in a cross which deflected to Madhanhanga, who made sure with his head.
Seven minutes later, Vengesai again sent Manondo through to slot home past a bemused Donovan Bernard in goals for the miners.
A few seconds later, Manondo got to the end of Madhanhanga’s low cross for an easy tap in at the back post.
Moyo then grabbed the consolation five minutes before full-time when a Jimmy Tigere headed clearance fell graciously for him and he blasted home from the edge of the box.
“What does a dirty goal post have to do with scoring and defending? If he is a man of God, how does he get affected by juju? Don’t blaspheme,” Ncube said in response to the dirty goal post allegations.
Ncube becomes the second Harare City coach after Taurai Mangwiro to lift the Chibuku Super Cup.
Harare City: T Munditi, T Samanja, J Tigere, M Vengesai (T Tumba 90’), P Kabwe (C Tshuma 76’), R Uchena, E Madhanhanga, W Manondo, T Chimwemwe, W Muvirimi, M Gaki (L Muyambo 57’)
How Mine: D Bernard, M Mukumba, M Ncube, S Makundika, F Makarati, T Masuku, T Makanda, P Moyo, K Musharu (A Muganyi 59’), P Manhanga (T Banda 30’), T Ranthokoane