By Jafferson Ndhlovu,
The Zimbabwe top flight league has lined up mouthwatering midweek fixture. This culminates into week ten fixtures being played this Wednesday and Thursday.
An increased number of teams in the league coupled with international fifa arranged calendars for the national teams could chock the system if not attended to early. We have Afcon 2017 qualifiers starting and Cosafa tournament underway in June. Qualifier for 2018 CHAN tournament to be hosted by Kenya.
With a quarter of the league so far covered by the majority of teams. The league has claimed its first casualty in the technical set. Tsholotsho FC had coach Farai Tawachera throwing in the towel after a poor start to the season.
Other coaches sitting on the line are top club Dynamos’ coach Llyod Mutasa, Harare City’s Mike Madzivanyika. The former infact rumours are ripe in capital city of his eminent dismissal. Interesting Mutasa and Madzivanyika are set to square off on Thursday at the National Sports Stadium.
A look at whats in store in the mid week.
Wednesday 24 May
Bulawayo City v Hwange
Hwange are on the road once again. This time about 450km away from their base. After a nightmarish Sunday outing against log leaders in Harare. They lost 3nil.
They arrive in the City of Kings to face a bubly Bulawayo City who are coming from a hard fought 3 points at the expense of Tsholotsho FC in Beitbridge. They will be fancying their chances of getting another three points.
The Coal miners better start collecting more 3 points. They are a point better from the relegation colleagues. And a bag goal difference against those team below them on the table.
Hwange have joint second poorest defensive record so far. Twelve goals shipped in. With two wins and two draws. They are far off their opponents for this midweek fixture.
How Mine v Black Rhinos
Quarter mark table toppers arrive in Bulawayo to face Howmine. Who had a disappointing trip to Chiredzi were they lost 2-1 against Kelvin Kaindu’s former team.
Black Rhinos on the other hand seem to be proving doubters wrong. Though coach Stanford Mtizwa has chosen to keep current form on the modest. It is evident that they are making some worth mentioning noise.
The Army side havr very precisely been decent side in their approach. One loss as favoured by six wins. They deserve to be were they are.
But Howmine wounded at the hands of Tau Mangwiro’s side Triangle United, this could just one of the picks for games of the mid week.
Thursday 25 May
Highlanders v Chicken Inn
The “Gamecocks” Chicken Inn started season impressively but seeming the machines to grill those chickens has broken down. On fourteen points and one of the three teams in season without a draw need rediscover their. Mentor Rahman Gumbo is a respected coach in the Zimbabwean football circles. Has won leagues in Zimbabwe with Highlanders and in Malawi. Above that he has coached the national team. Therefore his curriculum vitae is fertile enough to challenge for the title.
But they are meeting his former club Highlanders in this Bulawayo derby. Erol Akbay who took a swipe at his boys before the weekend matches and somewhat that tongue lash paid off.
They should be in good form to fight for more three points and fight for the top spot on the table in case other results go as they would wish them to.
Yadah v Triangle United
Morris Depot Stadium
The “Prayer Boys” Yadah Stars are slowly finding out that Premiership football is not for the faint hearted. Its more that just the spiritual aspects. Simply put virtually every in the league are spiritual. It bows down to how preparation you put into the game plan.
And again hope that some luck too is heading your direction.
Triangle United since coming to the premiership a couple season ago have learnt to keep their heads down. And decently been snooping points vitally even from seasoned campaigners. It can only be hoped that Yadah have finally sorted their in house fissues. Because that too can be draining on the minds of players due to uncertainties.
Harare City v Dynamos
Its a battle for troubled coaches. Mike Madzivanyika of Harare City versus Llyod Mutasa of Dynamos. Both these men are unsettled in their positions.
Their Mutasa after a 1all draw with Shabanie Mine at the weekend chose to pour cold waters of shimmers and impatient fans, saying that he is panicking. That is a brave face.
The loudy Dembare who their own term believe are supported by close to seven million or more. Will soon start making their voices heard.
One point from relegation waters, its not the story the boys in Blue though they have two games unaccounted for. One abandonment and one postponed. Anything can happen to those six points. The teasing and bunter in corridors of football can be torturous.
Harare City with equally dismissive spirits and almost scorned might not be the customer Dembare would love to entertain. Its a Harare Derby.
Madzivanyika could also want to prove a point show resilience. Dynamos is a team every one wants to beat any time. Whether in form or out form.
ZPC Kariba v Chapungu
Chapungu FC collected the first three points of the season and must be in fantastic spirits. But it’s the territory they are arriving at.
Sunday Chidzambwa was given a practical lesson by his former student. And the veteran coach must be seething with anger and anxiety. That frustration could just be vented upon the Airmen side.
But ZPC Kariba need to moderate their expectations as that could backfire in their own backyard in wish to quickly get back to winning ways.
Chidzambwa is too experienced to know that. And he should approach the much with subtleness. Everyone in the knows that Kariba town is a difficult town to travel to for football. Its nice for tourism though, therefore the Airmen can choose to be tourists or be what they are air backbone for the army.
Shabanie Mine v Bantu Rovers
Tsholotsho v Ngezi Platinum Dulivhadzimo Stadium,
CAPS United v fc Platinum
All games kick off at 3pm