Bosso in CAPS test

HARARE - CAPS United coach Taurai Mangwiro believes Saturday’s clash with log leaders Highlanders, the first of a mid-season double-header, will be crucial in shaping his team’s season.

The Green Machine, who have been blowing hot and cold in the Castle Premiership this season, host Bosso at the National Sports Stadium with the Bulawayo giants hoping to get back to winning ways following the midweek shock 1-0 defeat to city rivals Chicken Inn.  

And after posting a 2-0 win over Hwange on Wednesday, Mangwiro said his side is on the right path and are unfazed about the prospect of facing one of the favourites for the title.  

Makepekepe could reduce the gap between them and leaders Bosso to just three points with a victory on Saturday before they travel to Bulawayo next weekend for the return leg.

“We train according to our strengths and not according to the opponents we face. Every game is important to us and so we treat it as such,” Mangwiro told Daily News on Firday.

“We have been reminding our players that we should not get over excited about the win against Hwange. We also don’t want to read too much into their loss to Chicken Inn because it makes them more dangerous.  

“It’s not going to be an easy match because they would obviously want to bounce back to winning ways. It’s a new game and we have to be at our best if we are to utilise on our home advantage. Our main objective is to reduce the gap between us and the leading pack. Our next two fixtures against Highlanders will be very crucial to us. If you want to keep in touch with the leading teams, which we want more than anything, then these two games are vital.

“We want to play our usual game without putting pressure on ourselves. We are looking forward to collect maximum points.

“As a team, I think we have made progress although there are still areas which need to be rectified. We want to make sure we are as close to the leading teams as possible.”

Influential forward, Rahman Kutsanzira, who crossed the floor to join CAPS United last year, will have to pass a late fitness test after pulling a muscle in their mid-week win against Hwange.

Makepekepe welcome back their utility player Hardlife Zvirekwi who missed the mid-week match after coming late from national duty.

Highlanders, who have amassed 29 points from 14 games and lead second-placed Harare City by a single point, will get into the game well aware that they may lose pole position if they fail to garner maximum points against CAPS.

Bosso head coach Kelvin Kaindu will be hoping his strikers rediscover their scoring touch after citing their failure to convert their chances as the reason for their midweek loss.

“Football is won by scoring goals and unfortunately we failed to take our chances and we have to focus on getting it right in our next game,” Kaindu said in his post-match interview on Wednesday.

Fringe striker Ozias Zibande showed a lot of initiative after coming on as a second half substitute for Highlanders against Chicken Inn and may be rewarded with a starting jersey this afternoon.

Another player who may be thrown into the fray from the onset is midfielder Douglas Sibanda, who impressed against Black Rhinos in a charity encounter last week.

Sibanda is an option for the holding midfielder’s position after Hillary Madzivanyika struggled against Chicken Inn on Wednesday.

Fixtures

Saturday: Tripple B v Buffaloes (Dulibadzimu), FC Platinum v Black Rhinos (Mandava), CAPS United v Highlanders (National Sports Stadium, SS9).

Sunday: Shabanie Mine v Chicken Inn (Maglas), Triangle United v Black Mambas (Gibbo), Dynamos v How Mine (Rufaro, SS9), Monomotapa v Motor Action (Gwanzura), Hwange v Harare City (Colliery). - Godknows Matarutse and Sakheleni Nxumalo

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