DYNAMOS coach Kalisto Pasuwa is worried about the fitness levels of some of his players as they face off with Botswana beMobile league champions Mochudi Centre Chiefs in the preliminary round first leg tie at the National Sports Stadium on Sunday.
BY TAWANDA TAFIRENYIKA
Pasuwa, an assistant coach of the Warriors, has been in South Africa for the African Nations Championships (Chan) which ended at the weekend with Zimbabwe managing a semi-final finish following a 5-4 defeat on penalties by Libya.
Also in that team were eight players from Dynamos — goalkeeper George Chigova, Partson Jaure, Augustine Mbara, Themba Ndlovu, Tawanda Muparati, Masimba Mambare, Oscar Machapa and Simba Sithole.
And the Dynamos coach — speaking during the unveiling of their new — player — also attended by the club’s board of directors and the executive, said while he was happy with the fitness level of those players who were in South Africa on national duty, he was still assessing those that had remained behind.
He said he had received a report on the fitness level of the players from members of his technical team and was still assessing who to blend with those that played at the Chan tournament.
Pasuwa admitted he faced a challenge to come up with a team from the two sets of players ahead of the Sunday game. He also said Mochudi Centre Chiefs were ahead in terms of their fitness level as their league has been in full swing.
“I have received a report on the fitness level of the players who had remained behind. I will have to blend some of them with those who were in the national team after assessing their fitness levels. In terms of fitness levels, Mochudi Centre Chiefs are ahead because their league is on. I have always said we have a disadvantage because of our calendar.
“We gained invaluable experience from the Chan tournament. If you look at players from West Africa they are strong and they also have speed.
“They are very fast and we also need to be like that. Our players should have endurance,” Pasuwa said.
The Dynamos gaffer also lamented the loss of key defender Gift Bello to FC Platinum. He said he was a key player at Dynamos and never expected he would leave them at this stage.
“Bello was one of our key players and we never expected him to leave us at this stage,” Pasuwa said.
Dynamos goalkeeper George Chigova also said their experience at the Chan tournament had given them confidence as they embark on another journey in the Champions League.
“Playing in that tournament has given us confidence as we go into the Champions League. We were strong especially in defence and that has also been our strength at Dynamos. If you look at the games we play we always concede the least number of goals and I hope we will be able to carry that form into the Champions League,” Chigova said.
Masimba Mambare — a new Dynamos signing — concurred: “The Chan tournament will help us in terms of confidence. But having played at the Chan tournament where we did well, we are all now confident we can beat anyone,” said Mambare.
Dynamos will be hoping to carry a healthy lead into the return leg in Botswana the following weekend.
Should they advance to the first round they will face the winner between AS Vita of DRC and Nigeria’s Kano Pillars.
There are also chances the Harare giants will face South Africa’s Kaizer Chiefs should the South African giants also manage to advance to the second round of the prestigious competition.
Dynamos had another training session at the NSS yesterday afternoon with Mambare back on the pitch after missing a session on Wednesday.