The Sunday News
Fungai Muderere, Senior Sports Reporter
HIGHLANDERS FC communications and marketing officer Nozibelo Maphosa has said they are pleased that Yadah Stars’ bid to dodge facing them at Barbourfields Stadium this afternoon did not yield any result.
She said she is happy that the match remained at their favourite hunting ground.
After crowd trouble that took place at Emagumeni when Highlanders took on Dynamos a week ago, last Tuesday, Yadah Stars, through their lawyers, wrote to the Premier Soccer League (PSL) requesting that today’s fixture with the Bulawayo football giants be moved to a neutral venue outside Bulawayo for the safety of players and fans.
Expressing serious reservations against visiting Barbourfields Stadium, the Miracle Boys asked to play before an empty Barbourfields Stadium or move to a neutral stadium with Batá Stadium in Gweru being their suggested venue.
However, PSL could not budge. It would seem it could have needed miracles for the powers that be at PSL to adhere to Yadah’s request.
“It’s our home game and we always use Barbourfields Stadium as our home ground and as such we were bound to face them (Yadah) at Barbourfields. It’s pleasing to note that the venue was not changed by the powers that be. We are very much happy the initial programme was maintained and we once again expect our fans to throng Barbourfields Stadium in their numbers. It’s another home game as we seek to come back to winning ways and give our fans something to cheer on. However, we are very much against pitch invasion and missile throwing. Our fans should desist from that,” said Maphosa.
Before their abandoned match against DeMbare, Bosso were smarting from two identical 2-0 consecutive defeats they were handed by FC Platinum and Chicken Inn.
In that regard, morale has been low within the Bosso family but the club’s midfielders Elshaamar Farasi and McKinnon Mushore vowed that the situation was bound to change in their favour as they have kept pushing each other for five-star performances.
“I admit we have been going through a bad patch. However, all hope is not lost for us. We have been continuously encouraging each other to get back to our groove. We will keep on supporting each other,” said Mushore.
Meanwhile, Chicken Inn yesterday made the trip to Gweru for their game against bruised former league and Cup Kings, Caps United that will be played at Bata Stadium this afternoon.
Caps who have gone for seven games without registering a win, have Lloyd Chitembwe’s men are 10th with 26 points. They trail fifth placed Chicken Inn by 10 points.
While it is not pointing to the good for the Green Machine, Matore has refused to read much into that.
“It’s going to be a tricky game. We are going to Gweru to face a wounded team and as such they are going to come at us. However, our preparations for the game have gone on well.
“We are at a stage where everyone is fighting for his life. Caps United have been losing games but what would be important is to focus on how we want to play our game,” said Matore.
He added: “We are content on the way we have been playing and collecting points. We are in the chasing pack. Our target is to win week in week out.”
In their previous encounter, Makepekepe were edged 2-1 by four-time league champions FC Platinum. It was the former’s eighth loss of the season having posted the same number of draws and a paltry six wins.
They are on a worrying goal difference of -1.
Caps have picked up just three points from their last seven matches with stalemates against Black Rhinos, ZPC Kariba and Triangle while they lost to Ngezi Platinum Stars, Manica Diamonds, Herentals and FC Platinum.
Chitembwe has been furious with his team’s defence citing the need for his players to maintain their cool in decision making.
The first leg encounter between Chicken Inn and Caps United was played at Barbourfields Stadium and it ended in a nil all draw.
The struggling Harare giants will have Blessing Sarupinda, Phineas Bamusi, Ian Nyoni, Godknows Murwira and Tonderai Mateyaunga among others to bank on for a good result.
On the other hand, the Gamecocks will have left footed George Majika, Richard Hachiro, Brian Muza, Donovan Bernard, Tafadzwa Kutinyu, in-form Michael Charamba, Domuluhle Lunga, Mpumelelo Bhebhe, Arthur Chinda and Nelson Ketala to help them win. – @FungaiMuderere.