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Bosso coaches must win against Caps to save jobs

by Staff reporter
20 Mar 2022 at 06:26hrs | Views
HIGHLANDERS face off against Caps United at the National Sports Stadium in Harare this afternoon not only seeking their first win against their opponents since 2016, but it is a win that can save jobs of the Bosso coaches.

As reported by this publication last Sunday, Highlanders coach Mandla "Lulu" Mpofu is, in terms of his performance-related contract, meant to have picked up 20 points from the first 10 league games of the season.

From seven matches, Highlanders are on nine points, which means even if they were to win the next three fixtures, Bosso can only get 17 points from 10 matches.  It is said that the Bosso hierarchy, upon realising that Mpofu and technical team will fall short of the target decided to make some adjustments, with the coaches required to pick up seven points from three matches, starting from the game against Tenax.

So far, Bosso have amassed four points from two matches and must win against Caps United this afternoon to meet the target of seven. Mpofu could have made life easier had he collected maximum points against Tenax away in Mutare, seeing that he won against Herentals. He could have gone to the match against Caps United with less pressure to win.

"Highlanders coaches have a target of seven points from three matches starting from the Tenax game, which means they now have to beat Caps United or they are gone. It was agreed that the 20 points from 10 games was unrealistic. Even if they are to win against Caps United, they will be given another target of getting certain points from something like five games so that they do not relax."  

A number of coaches are being mentioned in football corridors as being lined-up to take over should Mpofu and his lieutenants fall by the wayside. One of those coaches is former player and coach Kelvin "KK" Kaindu, who is with Zanaco in his home country of Zambia. Former Hwange coach Nation Dube is said to have had his name put forward by an executive member.

Highlanders fans will vividly remember the days that KK brought when he lost out on the championship on goal difference to Dynamos in 2012 and 2013. It was also in 2013 that Highlanders won the Mbada Diamonds Cup, the country's most prestigious trophy at that time. Kaindu's Bosso of 2012 went unbeaten for 23 matches until they were thumped 3-0 by Monomotapa at Rufaro Stadium.

The Zambian quit Bosso in October 2014 after fans unleashed violence on him and his players following a humiliating 3-1 loss to ZPC Kariba at Hartsfield Rugby Ground, a defeat which left them with a slim chance of winning the championship.

When Kaindu quit Highlanders, Bosso were in the semi-finals of the Chibuku Super Cup but without the Zambian, they got a 3-0 drubbing at the hands of Harare City.  Kaindu was quoted in the media last week stating that he was open to a return to Highlanders should his former employers want him back.

Amid all the speculation, Highlanders acting chief executive officer Ronald Moyo continues to show a brave face in front of the media insisting that they are fully behind the coaches.

"The target is for them to win the matches and at the end of the day win the championship, I think that one is clear, it's in the public domain, that's their biggest target, they have to win the championship. And the target that we give them each and every coming match is to win games, which they did last week, we hope they do the same against Caps United. If there is any other target outside that, I am not aware of that, I am sure that Highlanders Football Club as an institution is also not aware of that,'' said Moyo.

Bosso have not beaten Caps United since 2016, that last win coming on 17 July 2016 when Bruce Kangwa scored the only goal as Amahlolanyama subdued Makepekepe 1-0 at Barbourfields Stadium. Since then, Caps United have dominated, with three wins from seven matches played while four of the fixtures have ended in a stalemate.

What makes the task even harder for the Highlanders coaches is that Caps United were victorious in the last meeting between the two giants of Zimbabwean football when they triumphed 2-1 at home in August 2019.

Highlanders assistant coach, Bekithemba Ndlovu said they were looking to exploit Caps United's weakness; that of conceding goals since Bosso have been creating a lot of goal scoring opportunities.

"From what I've seen, I think it's a team which has got experience but they concede a lot of goals, in one game, they conceded six goals, that on its own a big weakness, It shows that defensively they have got a big weakness, we will take advantage of it if we play our cards right,'' Ndlovu said.

Highlanders fans will be hoping for a continuation of last Sunday's impressive display against Herentals which saw Bosso win 4-0, but Caps United could prove to be tricky opponents away from home seeing that Amahlolanyama have not collected three points on the road since 2018. Bosso have also not scored in four away matches this season.

Source - The Sunday News