BY KEVIN MAPASURE
Caps United have elevated Darlington Dodo to the post of head coach until the end of the season after the championship-chasing giants were dumped by Lloyd Chitembwe, who joined the free-spending Harare City on Monday.
The Green Machine were left desperately scampering for a replacement after Chitembwe’s move to the wealthy local authority side was confirmed.
After Chitembwe’s departure caught Caps United leadership off guard, they called for an emergency meeting on Monday evening, where they decided to promote Dodo, instead of looking outside.
He was set to name his assistants late yesterday, in the wake of technical director Nelson Matongorere also leaving the club yesterday.
It is likely that veteran defender Method Mwanjale will be roped in as one of the assistant coaches.
Dodo has been at Caps United since last year following his stint with Bulawayo City, where he was dismissed over a spate of poor results.
But following stints with teams of lesser profiles, having also coached Tsholotsho in the top-tier division, Dodo has finally landed a big job, taking charge of a club that aspires to win the league title every year.
Yesterday, Caps United president Farai Jere announced to the players, at the morning training session, that Dodo was the new head of the technical department as they prepare for their visit to Gweru, where they will take on Chapungu in a league match.
Jere gave assurances that Dodo was the right man for the job because he was qualified and also had experience at the top level.
He said while Dodo comes in with a lesser reputation, he is going to be a big fish by the time he leaves Caps United.
“We have appointed Dodo to take us through the season. What is important is that he is a qualified coach and he has got a wealth of experience,” he said.
“We are going to support him as much as we can so that we can achieve our ambition of winning the league title. With his experience, we are quite confident that he can take over from where Lloyd left.
“At Caps, we build names. When Charles Mhlauri came here, his profile was not as big as it was when he left. We can do that with Dodo, so the key thing is for us to support him.”
By appointing Dodo, Caps United are hoping for continuity since he has been in the system for about a year now.
The club hierarchy appears intent on not upsetting the system by bringing in someone who would come in and take time to acquaint himself with the system and players, considering the stage of the season.
Dodo said he was grateful to be taking over from Chitembwe, who had done a lot for the club, adding that he was looking to inspire the team to glory this season.
“I’m actually overwhelmed and I’m really grateful to the presidium for the confidence (they have shown) in me,” he said.
“I also want to thank the former coach Lloyd Chitembwe for what he has done for the team and the project and where he has left us, the position that we are on the log, and the team as a whole.
“I also want to thank the players for appreciating my upgrading and all the members who are in support. I think let’s start playing and then we talk more as we go, but I promise that we will make sure we remain as consistent as we have been as we fight for the honours.”
Caps United currently sit in second position on the Castle Lager Premier Soccer League table, a single point behind FC Platinum, with 15 rounds of matches left this season.
A host of other teams are also well in the title race and Dodo knows quite well that the task at hand will not be an easy one.