After being knocked out of the Mbada Diamonds Cup last week, bruised Chicken Inn will be hoping to restore lost pride and collect maximum points from Black Mambas at Morris Depot tomorrow in a Castle Premiership tie.
Report by Fortune Mbele
Chicken Inn were bundled out of the country’s richest football tournament by Gunners 3-2 through a goal by Ishmael Lawe deep in added time at Pelandaba Stadium in Gwanda on Sunday.
The fast foods outlet side is without Sunday’s man-of-the-match Sydney Linyama and centre-back Hebert Dick due to suspension, but head coach Adam Ndlovu is confident they will continue from where they left off in the league as the spirit is still high in camp.
“Linyama has been playing very well in the last few games, but then like I have always said, we have a squad of 30 players and someone will have to take over.
After the loss to Gunners in the Mbada Cup, we have to pick up ourselves and I believe we are still okay,” Ndlovu said.
The likely replacement for Dick to partner skipper Felix Chindungwe in central defence could be Guide Goddard with Moses Jackson and Brian Mbiriri on the flanks.
Linyama had the game of his life for Chicken Inn in Gwanda and walked away $500 richer after he was instrumental in the two goals that they fired past Gunners goalkeeper Clayton Dambo.
Dick was out of his game at Pelandaba Stadium while Evans Chikwaikwai and Tendai Mukambi also worked tirelessly upfront and could carry the day for Chicken Inn tomorrow.
In the last four matches in the league, Chicken Inn have lost one game, 1-0 to Monomotapa in Harare, beat Shabanie Mine 2-1, drawn 1-1 with Hwange at the Colliery before holding championship contenders Highlanders to a goalless draw at Barbourfields Stadium.
Although not running for the honours, they are likely to end the season in a respectable position as they sit on position five with 36 points from 21 games.
On the other hand, Black Mambas were also given the boot from the Mbada Diamonds Cup after falling 2-1 to Buffaloes at Sakubva Stadium on Sunday.
Coach John “Toto” Ncube believes that for “Warumwa Warumwa” to survive relegation, they will have to collect maximum points from the next four matches and tomorrow’s clash against Chicken Inn is not an exception.
“We played well in the Mbada Cup against Buffaloes, but we wasted several chances. For us to survive relegation, we will have to win the four next games.
If we do that, then we will be safe. We are definitely gunning for three points against Chicken Inn, but they will not come easy. Chicken Inn are a good side and they are very organised,” Ncube said.
Mambas are without defenders Sam Mutenheri and Patrick Muswere due to suspension.
Lying on position 12 with 23 points from 21 games, Mambas have fared well of late, beating Caps United 1-0, Gunners 2-0, sharing the spoils in a 1-1 draw with Harare City before holding Motor Action to a 2-2 draw. Meanwhile, relegation dogfight beckons at Gwanzura Stadium on Sunday as basement side Quelaton take on Blue Rangers.