PSL preview No13: Expectation turns into frustration for ZPC

HARARE - WHEN Jostein Mathuthu became the first coach to bring Premiership football to the resort town of Kariba many believed Mashonaland West province was finally regaining its place amongst local football’s elite.

But events that have been unfolding at the Zimbabwe Power Company bankrolled club ZPC Kariba have seen those expectations withering into frustration.

Since Mathuthu helped ZPC Kariba clinch the PSL ticket with two games remaining after an unassailable 72 points from 32 matches last year in the Northern Region Division One league, nothing inspiring has been coming from Kariba.

Rather, what has followed has been defeating news.

Players have had to go for weeks uncertain of their future as the club battled to convince the Zimbabwe Power Company, who are fighting a liquidity crisis, to extend an olive branch and bankroll the club.

Consequently preparations have been stalled and this means the club enters their debut PSL season ill-prepared and low on confidence.

They start their PSL campaign with a new coach Saul Chaminuka after Mathuthu, who after a trailblazing season parted ways with the club after it emerged his coaching credentials fell short of Premiership standards.

To make matters worse for ZPC Kariba, they start off the season away from their fortress and at an adopted stadium, after Chaminuka Stadium was denounced for failing to meet PSL standards.

Against such odds, Chaminuka is expected to provide the tonic to mount a strong challenge when the club kicks off its campaign today at their adopted home of Gwanzura Stadium.

Unfortunately ZPC first five games do not inspire much confidence to their predicament.

ZPC start off with CAPS United, then face last season’s second runner ups Harare City, defending champions Dynamos and title aspirants FC Platinum in their first three matches.

Although keeping a brave face the former Buffaloes coach is calling a spade a spade and admits his side faces a mammoth task to survive in the premiership.

“We had our own challenges just like any other club in the Premiership,” Chaminuka told the Daily News this week.

“There were rumors that we might not participate and it affected our preparations a lot. It had a negative impact on our preparations. The input from the players was poor because there were in the dark. We couldn’t play enough friendly matches.

"I think we only played two competitive matches and we are coming up against teams that have been playing friendly matches against Premiership teams and other international clubs. We are actually going to use the first few matches to fine-tune our squad.”

Fortunately in football, teams are rarely judged by how they sluggishly start but by how strongly they finish.

ZPC will hope the Premiership players that joined their ranks during off season will bring stability to the team.

The Kariba club brought in experienced players such as Norman Togara and his brother Pardon Chinungwa together with Limited Chikafa, who were at Triangle last season.

The trio were all integral in helping Triangle finish a credible eighth in their debut season in the top-flight last year and they need to repeat a similar feat with ZPC this season.

Obey Mwerahari, Caleb Masocha, Peter Muzondo, Tawanda Nyamandwe, Tawanda Munyanduri and David Rediyoni, Moses Makanje, Ben Nyahunzwi, Tsepo Ranthokoane and Tonderayi Mateyaunga have also joined the club.

Daily News predicated position: 9th

Post a comment

Readers are kindly requested to refrain from using abusive, vulgar, racist, tribalistic, sexist, discriminatory and hurtful language when posting their comments on the Daily News website.
Those who transgress this civilised etiquette will be barred from contributing to our online discussions.
- Editor

Your email address will not be shared.