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Poor scoring rate worries Bosso coach

by Staff reporter
18 Oct 2021 at 05:27hrs | Views
Bulawayo City 0 - 0 Highlanders
DESPITE qualifying for the quarter-finals of the Chibuku Super Cup, Highlanders' coach Mandla Mpofu is worried by his team's inability to convert scoring chances they create.

Mpofu was left cursing after watching his players failing to breach the Bulawayo City backline in their last Chibuku Super Cup group game at Barbourfields yesterday.

In the six group matches, Highlanders only managed to score four goals, three from the strikers and a penalty converted by goalkeeper Ariel Sibanda when Bosso edged City 1-0 in the reverse fixture.

Striker Washington Navaya was on target in Highlanders' opening match of the tournament when they beat Bulawayo Chiefs 1-0.

When matches resumed after a long Covid-19-induced break, striker Lynoth Chikuhwa scored in Highlanders' identical 1-1 draws against Chiefs and Chicken Inn.

Heading into the elimination stage of the competition, Mpofu's worries are justified as they will meet free-scoring FC Platinum, who have banged in an impressive 16 goals in six games.

To avoid travelling out of Bulawayo for the quarter-finals, Highlanders needed to win by five clear goals yesterday to top Group B, but their strike force was blunt.

"To be honest, while we celebrate making it to the next stage of the tournament, I'm not happy with our poor scoring rate. As a coach, I would have wanted us to score more goals to build our confidence. I feel that's one area that we need to work on.

‘'In as much as I understand the difficulties and challenges of playing derbies week in, week out in the remodelled Chibuku Super Cup, we should learn quickly to convert the few chances that come our way," said Mpofu.

Mpofu fielded all his four forwards, Navaya, Chikuhwa, Bukhosi Sibanda and Keith Mavhunga in the starting line-up,  but they found City's defence, marshalled by the ex-Bosso pair of Douglas Sibanda and Vincent Moyo, resolute.

Bosso made two changes to the squad that drew against Chicken Inn a fortnight ago, with right-back Charlton Siamalonga and striker Mavhunga getting starts.

Crispen Ncube was drafted into central midfield, coming in for Nqobizitha Masuku, who started on the bench, while defensive midfielder Whiston Mhango missed the encounter due to injury.

Mavhunga got Bosso's first chance of the game after 10 minutes, but his shot was saved by Bhekimpilo Ncube, in goals for City.

Mavhunga blew another scoring opportunity 10 minutes later when he failed to connect an inviting cross from Lynoth Chikuhwa.

In the 67th minute, City's Dalubuhle Dlodlo beat Mbongeni Ndlovu on the right before attempting to beat Highlanders' goalkeeper Ariel Sibanda from an acute angle.

The best chance of the day fell to City on the stroke of full-time, when the municipal side launched a quick counter raid with right-back Lewis Ncube.

Instead of passing the ball to a better positioned Dlodlo in the centre, Ncube selfishly went for goal and his effort was blocked by Bosso defender Peter Muduhwa.

While Bosso were mourning about lack of potency, City coach Philani Beefy Ncube was happy with how his charges have improved.

"I'm happy with how we've been improving. Had we been decisive going forward, we could have won this game. What we must learn to do right is to convert the half chances that come our way," said Ncube.


Bulawayo City: Bhekimpilo Ncube, Lewis Ncube, Wilfred Munorwei, Vincent Moyo,, Douglas  Sibanda, Welcome Ndiweni (Wellington Kamudyariwa, 58th minute), Melikhaya Ndlovu, Leslie Lunga (Dalubuhle Dlodlo, 54th minute), Crispen Machisi, Alton Ndlovu (Eddie Nkulungo, 70th minute), John Chinyerere (Elshama Farasi, 90th minute)

Highlanders: Ariel Sibanda, Charlton Siamalonga (Nqobizitha Masuku, 65th minute), Mbongeni Ndlovu, Andrew Mbeba, Peter Muduhwa, Crispen Ncube, Joel Ngodzo (Divine Mhindirira, 46th minute), Washington Navaya (Ray Lunga, 46th minute), Keith Mavhunga (Godfrey Makaruse, 65th minute), Bukhosi Sibanda, Lynoth Chikuhwa (Rodi Sibanda, 86th minute)

Source - The Herald