BULAWAYO Chiefs coach Lizwe Sweswe is hoping to turn the team into a force to reckon with this season.
The 2023 Castle Lager Premier Soccer League season kicks off this weekend following the Challenge Cup between FC Platinum and Chiefs that was played on Saturday.
The former FC Platinum gaffer, who returns to the Bulawayo side following the departure of Nilton Terreso, arrived following a massive player exodus that saw the club lose the Moyo Twins, Kelvin and Elvis, as well as Arthur Musiyiwa who joined Dynamos.
They also lost Kelvin Madzongwe and Perfect Chikwende who joined Caps United and FC Platinum, respectively.
Goalie Matripples Muleya left to join Triangle, while a number of players dropped to the lower divisions.
However, Sweswe who is in his second stint as Chiefs head coach is unfazed by the mass exodus.
He is looking forward to the new season with optimism.
“I'm not looking at who we lost, but focusing on who we have at the moment. We may have lost the Castle Challenge Cup, but this was a good exercise for the team,” he said.
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“The focus is getting our mojo back. The hope is to be a fiery force in the league, not to be a pushover. Over the world, teams lose players, but they remain afloat.
“There is need to be focused and as the coach, I will not get tired of motivating the players to be better. We have to move on and gear up for the league which starts next weekend.”
He is confident his charges will rise, especially with the experienced Danny Phiri being part of the team.
Phiri put up a good show on Saturday, although it was not enough to save the team from defeat.
Sweswe also roped in ageing striker Kuda Musharu who he hopes will improve the team.