ESTEEMED followers of the game of football, thank you for finding time for interaction. Highlanders’ world presently looks like they are staring at Steve Wonder’s glasses. All black. Without any shades of white. Hardly anything resembling their famous strip.
Dumped out of the country’s premier knockout tournament – the Chibuku Super Cup – the Bulawayo powerhouse also appear out of reckoning for this season’s championship title owing to the wretched run they are enduring since the turn of the second half of the campaign. That league misery has realised a miserly return of a measly two points from a possible 18 – a meagre two draws in six games. The rest have been losses. They have also failed to score in five of those games.
To put that into proper perspective, Highlanders landed not high, but low during the month of August and did not register even a single goal in four attempts throughout that month. They presently sit in the unfamiliar territory of mid-table. For a club that promised so much with their positive play when Dutch expatriate tactician Erol Akbay took charge, Bosso have simply not bossed their way this season.
As they continue limping, the ripple effects have been felt even in the technical department where there also appeared to be some animosity as assistant coach Amin Soma-Phiri and goalkeepers’ trainer, Cosmas Zulu, were once suspended for indiscipline.
The former has since resigned following allegations by Akbay that he (Soma-Phiri) was sabotaging him and the team. In the midst of those suspensions, demotions and resignation in that department, which somewhat created a circus of sorts, Akbay also announced that he would not be renewing his contract beyond its expiry at the end of this season.
As the squad has struggled for star power, with Akbay accusing the executive of reneging on its off-season promise that they would beef up the squad, accusations were traded as none would own up, but absolve themselves of the team’s struggles.
Highlanders’ season has also been plagued by fans who have often courted trouble for the club on more than one occasion, playing Bosso into trouble with local football authorities for the unsporting behaviour of violence at match venues. While the team has sometimes appeared clueless and toothless on the park, their faithful have at times been ruthless on the terraces.
Are Bosso burning?
Is the affliction blighting them curable?
Does there remain anything for the Bulawayo giants to salvage out of a seemingly hopeless season?
It’s Game On, Play On!
What a week for Zimbabwean soccer! Of the three giants, only Makepekepe are still in the Chibuku Super Cup tournament. In the past three years the competition has not been won by any of the traditional giants. This shows that the so-called small teams up their game whenever they play the heavyweights. I watched the Dynamos-Bulawayo City game and realised that City’s game plan was to man-mark DeMbare’s danger men and hit them on the break; thus they won the game. This all shows that the tactics of local coaches are improving. – Tawanda Mhlanga.
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