BY FORTUNE MBELE
CHICKEN INN midfielder Innocent Mucheneka, who has been absent without official leave (AWOL) since pre-season training started two weeks ago, faces disciplinary action from his employer, a club official has said.
Mucheneka, whom Chicken Inn insist has a running contract with them, has not been reporting for training and his whereabouts are unknown to his club, amid speculation linking him to Caps United and a move to an unnamed South African club.
Club secretary Tavengwa Hara yesterday said as far they were concerned, the 2018 Castle Lager Soccer Star of the Year finalist was AWOL and if he pitched up anytime from now, he faced censure from the club.
“He (Mucheneka) is AWOL and will face disciplinary action. We have not heard any word from him and we won’t have players behaving as they please,” Hara said.
“He has received his January salary and wherever he is and wherever he wants to go, he needs to be disciplined. We are not going to entertain anything from him and he will not kick a ball at Chicken Inn before he is disciplined.”
Mucheneka is the only player who has not yet attended training at the Gamecocks, who have signed former Dynamos’ Valentine Kadonzvo and Panashe Mutasa.
Kadonzvo is having issues with his former club after he allegedly duped the Glamour Boys into giving him a clearance on the understanding that he was on his way to the United States on scholarship.
The Gamecocks have also grabbed Brett Amidu, Sipho Ndlovu, Clive Augusto and Malvin Gaki.
Chicken Inn will be taking part in an invitational tournament at the end of the month in Malawi as part of their pre-season preparations, and they will combine that trip with their pre-season camp.
Hara said they would leave for Malawi on February 26 as they were expected to be in the country before February 28, where they have been invited by champions Nyasa Big Bullets, who won the league title last year with Kalisto Pasuwa.
“They (Nyasa Big Bulllets) have written to us to say that the Malawi FA had accepted their proposal to host us and two other clubs, Clube Ferroviário de Nampula from Mozambique and the other Be Forward Wanderers from Malawi. It’s a four-team tournament. Nyasa Big Bullets said they await the Malawi FA to get in touch with Zifa and we should be in Malawi not later than February 28,” he said.
Hara said they were not sure of the venue of the tournament yet, but it would run from March 1 to 4.
Last year, Chicken Inn played Zanaco and Nkana Red Devils of Zambia at Luveve Stadium in Bulawayo in February as part of their pre-season preparations.