HomeSportSoccerCaps set up Dynamos final

Caps set up Dynamos final


Highlanders . . . . (0) 1
CAPS United . . . . . . .(1) 2


HIGHLANDERS were left to rue their failure to convert superior ball possession into goals after the Bulawayo giants were eliminated from the Bob91 competition by Caps United in an incident filled encounter Barbourfields Stadium yesterday.

Rodreck Mutuma and Takudzwa Mahori scored for the Green Machine to set up a final against Dynamos next Sunday at Rufaro Stadium — the second meeting of the two teams in three weeks.

Highlanders replied through substitute Obadiah Tarumbwa.

And Bosso coach Bongani Mafu admitted his charges had not played badly, but would have to learn how to develop a killer-punch upfront.
“I think for 30 to 40 minutes we were untouchable but being untouchable without shooting at goal does not win you games,” Mafu said.
“We played good football but did not have the guts to shoot at goal and that is something that we have to correct at training,” he said

Bosso dominated proceedings from the onset, but paid for their failure to find the target when a tactical masterstroke by Caps United coach Mark Harrison turned the game on its head less than 10 minutes before the break.

Harrison introduced Leonard Tsipa for the ineffective Kudzai Nyamupfukudza on 36 minutes and suddenly the pendulum swung Caps’ way as the ageless striker turned provider for Mutuma’s opener on the stroke of half time.

And after the break, the exciting Mahori doubled the visitor’s lead when he waltzed past Highlanders linkman Nqobizitha Masuku before firing across the face of goal to beat Bosso keeper Ariel Sibanda at the far post.

The goal came about when the hosts were down to 10-man as defender Douglas Sibanda was on the sidelines receiving treatment after coming off second best in a physical confrontation with Mutuma.

That confrontation between Sibanda and Mutuma was the first of ugly scenes that characterised the tie later on in the game culminating in a 12 minute stoppage after Highlanders had pulled one back through Tarumbwa on 71 minutes.

The Caps players felt hard-done by the referee Philani Ncube’s decision to let Tarumbwa’s effort stand as they felt the striker had scored, while their keeper was under attack from missiles thrown from the Soweto end.

For some moments, it seemed like the match would end prematurely as Harrison was at some point seen motioning to his players to leave the pitch, but the Englishman told journalists after the match that he had just been concerned about his players’ safety.

“I was just concerned about my players’ safety and when I called them, it was to tell them to be strong and fight together when the match resumed,” Harrison said. “I think the Highlanders fans did us a favour because after the stoppage, my players went back there and played with a lot of heart.”

The Englishman did admit though that Highlanders were the better side for the first 30 minutes of the game and attributed the turnaround in the match to Tsipa’s entry as that allowed them to play with two effective strikers upfront.

Highlanders: A Sibanda, W Chingodza, H Moyo, D Sibanda, T Hadebe, T Ngulube, N Masuku, R Kutsanzira, B Kangwa (G Makaruse 84 min), G Nyoni (O Tarumbwa 66 min),T Chideu.

Caps United: V Twaliki, H Zvirekwi, R Pfumbidzai, S Makatuka, J Jangano, L Fiyado (C Machisi 67th min), M Muchenje, D Mukandi, T Mahori, R Mutuma, K Nyamupfukudza (L Tsipa 36 min)

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