HomeSportSoccerDynamos’ DRC trip in limbo

Dynamos’ DRC trip in limbo

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Dynamos’ trip to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) for a Caf Orange Champions League clash against TP Mazembe was in doubt last night because of the ongoing strike by Air Zimbabwe pilots.

The pilots went on strike on Wednesday morning demanding payment of their allowances believed to be running into millions of dollars.

Hundreds of passengers were left stranded as a result of the industrial action and fears are that Dynamos may face the same fate.

The Harare giants engage defending champions TP Mazembe at the Stade de la Kenya in Lubumbashi on Sunday.

However, club secretary Oliver Manyau who will be travelling with the team, said their travel agent told them that all was well and their trip would go ahead as scheduled.

Manyau said: “We have been issued with the tickets from our travel agent. The tickets are from Air Zimbabwe and we should be leaving by 1 pm tomorrow (today).

“We have a delegation of 29 people — seven technical persons, head of delegation and three officials.”

The Harare giants cannot afford to miss the tie as this may attract a ban from Caf.

Dynamos were also last night battling to solve a goalkeeping crisis by trying to lure Black Mambas goalie Willard Manyatera to join their contingent for the DRC match.

Efforts to get Highlanders defender Zephaniah Ngodzo and Caps United midfielder Stephen Alimenda hit a brick wall forcing coach Elvis Chiweshe to name a 16-member squad.

Only Manyatera will be the “unfamiliar” face in the dressing room if his club releases him.

The Harare giants were depleted after 7 key players were suspended by the Confederation of African Football.

The Chiweshe-coached side was hoping to rope in Ngodzo, Alimenda and Manyatera whom they registered for this tournament to compensate for the suspended players.

Chiweshe will have to do with what is at his disposal in a match which will see his side out of the running for the semi-finals if they lose in Lubumbashi.

TP Mazembe, who won the competition last year, will be out to prove a point after the Congolese received a 3-0 hiding from Tunisian giants Esperance.

The result prompted former coach Frenchman Diego Garzito to leave the club and he was replaced by former Senegalese international Lamine Ndiaye as the caretaker coach.

Mazembe chairman Moise Katumbi said Ndiaye’s appointment would boost the team’s performance.
“Lamine is here to get good results for our team” Katumbi told BBC Sport.

According to the club’s spokesman Eddy Kabelu, Garzito, who led the team to its first African Champions League title last year, had agreed to take up the post of acting technical director at the club.
But he said the Frenchman left the club’s Lubumbashi base for France without telling anyone.

“We were surprised to learn that he left the club without informing us or talking to the chairman,” Kabelu said.

The club decided to make the changes following Mazembe’s 3-0 loss to Esperance of Tunisia in the African Champions League last weekend.

The 54-year-old Ndiaye, who coached Senegal’s national team in 2008, is caretaker coach until the end of season.

He could be given the job on a permanent basis if he leads TP Mazembe to success in the Champions League. Ndiaye also coached Coton Sport of Cameroon from 2003 to 2006.

Dynamos squad

W Manyatera, M Diya, P Sithole, T Maingire, D Kutyauripo, G Zhokinyu, D Maringwa, M Mahala, W Sithole, E Mashiri, M Makopa, K Banda, E Gwekwerere, I Pitamujah, T Kamusoko, N Alufandika, A Mbara.

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