Senior Sports Reporter
JOSEPH “Shabba” Takaringofa made a sensational return this week to his hometown to take over the reins at Mutare City Rovers as the head coach.
A true Mutare football icon by all standards, the former Tanganda midfield genius was once in the Mutare City Rovers technical department back in 2014 when he worked with Taurai “Dhana” Makukutu as his assistant.
Takaringofa rose to fame during his playing days at the star-studded Tanganda FC which won the then coveted Castle Cup against CAPS United in 1993. Years later after an agonising end to a decorated career as a player, Takaringofa, who traces his roots to the Mazhambe section of Sakubva, turned into coaching.
To date, the soft-spoken gaffer has set his targets with Gusha Bhora as he aims at ensuring that the team avoids relegation. He is wasting no time as he is set to start his pre-season preparations on Monday.
“We will start our pre-season preparations on January 8. We are aiming at surviving relegation and anything that comes on top of that is a bonus. I believe we can achieve that and all we need to do is to take our time to assemble a competitive squad,” he said.
The former Ngezi Platinum assistant coach said Mutare was endowed with numerous talented players who only need to be given a chance.
“I know it is almost a norm that when a team gets promoted it targets some well known new signings. Well, that is okay, but I think we have more than enough talent here in Mutare.
“You will be surprised when we assemble a competitive squad from the talent that is at our disposal here in Mutare. If we used to have talented players all along what could have changed today? All we need is to widen our spectrum of selection and ensure we give everyone who deserves a chance,” said Takaringofa.
He called on all stakeholders to support the team as it represents the people of the eastern border city and the province at large.
“There is no doubt that Mutare City Rovers represent the people of the eastern border city and the province at large. Therefore, the team deserves everyone’s support, from individuals to the corporate community. We need every other stakeholder’s support if we are to make Mutare City Rovers the pride of Manicaland.
“This is not about individual brilliance, but team work. After all, football is a team sport, therefore let everyone who thinks they can help this project to succeed come forward with their ideas or resources so that we take the team to another level,” he said.