HomeSportChitembwe wary of Harare City

Chitembwe wary of Harare City

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BY TAWANDA TAFIRENYIKA
RETURNING Caps United coach Lloyd Chitembwe has acknowledged that he faces a difficult opponent in his former team, Harare City, ahead of their Castle Lager Premier Soccer League clash at the National Sports Stadium on Sunday.

The title-winning gaffer, who switched from Harare City a couple of weeks ago,  having left the Green Machine in 2019, returns to find a totally different team — low in confidence following a spate of dreadful results in the Chibuku Super Cup tournament.

A team that had earned the reputation of being Cup Kings because of the manner in which they buried opponents in cup games, crashed out of the richest knockout tournament in the group stages, in one of their lowest points tally in recent years. It culminated in the sacking of coach Darlington Dodo.

Although a victory over ZPC Kariba gave hope to their followers craving so much for those glory days when Chitembwe was in charge, having taken them to the winners’ podium in 2016 for the first time since 2005, they were low in confidence.

Chitembwe watched Caps United from the stands as they battled ZPC Kariba in the searing and energy-sapping heat of Kariba in their first league match which ended in a 0-0 draw.

The Caps coach, however, is not interested in the past games. He says what is critical is the adaptation of players to his tactical orientation.

He said although spirits were high in camp, that alone will not be enough to win games but the way players were adjusting to his style of play.

“There are still a lot of things to work on and improve. Its work in progress,” Chitembwe said as the players went through their paces at the National Sports Stadium B arena yesterday.

“But I must say I am happy by the players’ adaptation to the demands I have put in. It has raised some confidence. The spirits are high, but that alone will not win games. I am particularly happy with the way they are responding to my tactical orientation, the way I want them to play,” he said.

Nevertheless, Chitembwe predicts a tough encounter against the Sunshine City Boys, saying they have quality players in the form of striker Clive Rupiya, midfielder Tatenda Tavengwa and defender Marshal Machazane.

Chitembwe though sees the intimate knowledge he has about Harare City as an advantage to them.

“Its going to be a very difficult game against Harare City. But fortunately for me I know the profile of the team. They have a couple of quality players. Clive Rupiya is a top striker, then there is upcoming midfielder Tatenda Tavengwa. I believe he is going to be a great midfielder if he keeps working hard. Then there is Marshal Machazane — a dependeble and reliable defender. But equality we have got quality as well to match them. I am happy with the progress my lads have made so far in terms of adjusting to the way I want them to play. We are looking forward to the match,” he said.

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