Former Warriors defender Kaitano Tembo has backed Dynamos to go all the way to the mini-league phase of the Caf Orange Champions League.
The Zimbabwe giants face Algerian side MC Alger in the second leg, first round of the Champions League at the massive 105 000 seater Stade 5 Juillet 1962 Stadium in Algiers tomorrow afternoon, carrying a 4-1 lead from the first leg.
Speaking from his base at SuperSport United in Tshwane, South Africa, where he is the reserves team coach, Tembo said the inclusion of youngsters in the team was good as it would help them gain the much-needed experience going into the group stages.
Coach Lloyd Mutasa has Under-23 internationals Archford Gutu and Denver Mukamba, Rodrick Mutuma and Devon Chafa, in addition to the experienced David Kutyauripo, skipper Desmond Maringwa, Guthrie Zhokinyi and Farai Vimisayi.
“Dynamos’ chances in the Champions League look good and I think they can reach the group stages even with the youngsters in the team.
“That’s the only way they can gain experience and some of them are already playing for the Warriors senior team,” he said.
While he lauded the presence of Maringwa in the team, he also thought veteran striker Murape Murape would also have made a difference in the tough North African jungle.
“It might (Murape’s absence) affect the team a bit because Murape is very experienced,”
The chaotic travel arrangements cost the team two days of training ahead of the do–or–die encounter.
Coach Lloyd Mutasa, his two assistants and 18 players flew out of the capital on Thursday afternoon aboard an Ethiopian airways flight in a tiresome 24-hour route that took them through Addis Ababa, Paris and were expected to land in Algiers at around midnight on Friday.
DeMbare were forced to leave behind some members of the travelling party including assistant Masimba Dinyero, head of delegation Kenny Mubaiwa, and committee member Mike George who followed the team yesterday and are expected in Algeria a few hours before kick-off.
Mutasa, who has seen it all during his playing days at Dynamos was on Thursday still wearing a brave face saying the team is still focused and the problems that characterised their trip will only but motivate them.
Mutasa, who was part of the Dynamos’ 1995 squad that arrived in Algiers on the match day but managed to beat their opponents US Chaouia 3–2, said the experience taught him that no amount of distraction can derail determination.
The former Kiglon and Highway gaffer said he will maintain the team that humiliated MC Algiers with star midfielder Denver Mukamba expected to carry on from where he left in the first leg while the return of talisman Archford Gutu will give the team more depth.
Meanwhile, MC Algiers assistant coach Kheireddine Maazavi has vowed his team will overturn the three-goal deficit and declared that they would qualify for the second round of the competition.
He said the return of attacking midfielder Mohamed Aberran from injury will work magic for the team.
“Preparations are going on well and the players are ready. We are ready to achieve a good result to qualify for the next round. Mahomed Aberran has returned to training. I think his condition has improved and he may be ready this Sunday to face Dynamos,” Maazavi says on the club website.