All set for Harare derby

HARARE - After a long wait, the Harare derby has finally arrived with bitter rivals Dynamos and CAPS United set to battle at the National Sports Stadium tomorrow.

Since the fixtures list was released in February, all eyes were on Week 14, the date these two giants of Zimbabwean football were set to collide.

Moral in both camps has been high throughout the week and tomorrow’s match has all the ingredients of a thriller for football fans.

Dynamos midfielder Devon Chafa has backed the Glamour Boys to come out tops in this meeting against their bitter rivals.

The midfielder, who missed the better part of last season serving a six-month doping ban, concedes the Makepekepe are currently enjoying a good run in the league but this will not deter the Glamour Boys.

“Games of this magnitude motivate us and it’s up to the players to come to the party. CAPS will obviously be looking forward to beat us, but we are ready to continue with our dominance over them,” Chafa told the Daily News.

“They are playing well but it’s none of our business. We should be focused on our side. It’s a derby, we know each other. I think we just need to work hard and see what comes out.

“Every time we get into the match we always want to win. We need to adopt the right attitude though. Every team wants to beat Dynamos.

“We have been winning against them for some time now and they are eager to beat us. But we are even more determined to maintain our record.

“There is this great feeling that comes with beating CAPS United.  CAPS remain our number one enemy and we enjoy beating them every time we play.”

Both teams are tied on 23 points heading into tomorrow’s derby only separated by goal difference and trail log leaders Highlanders by a single point.      

CAPS have failed to beat DeMbare since 2009 in the league but Chafa has urged his teammates not to get carried away thinking that this dominance will make tomorrow’s clash an easy encounter.

“In derby matches we don’t read too much into form and our previous dominance over our opponents is now water under the bridge. Of course we have been dominating in these derbies lately but we should not relax,” he said.

The Green Machine, seem to be moving with a spring in their step and will go into tomorrow’s match high on confidence after a good run that has seen Taurai Mangwiro’s team win all their last four matches. 

The last time the Green Machine beat DeMbare in the league was way back in 2009 when Nyasha Mushekwi struck a memorable brace before his move to Mamelodi Sundowns the following season.

But Makepekepe, appear more determined to stop the tide this season, judging by the mood from their camp. The Green Machine looked one happy family this week as they prepared for the clash.

“All derby matches are important. This one has been made interesting in that we are tied on points with Dynamos and one point away from the leading team Highlanders,” CAPS skipper Tapiwa Kumbuyani told the Daily News earlier this week.

“There is a lot at stake. We are eager to end the jinx against Dynamos at the same time fancying our own chances for the title.”

The Harare derby is likely to be played without head coaches Calisto Pasuwa and Taurai Mangwiro.

The two coaches are currently undergoing Caf A Licence coaching course at Zifa Village where 31 coaches are attending and it’s not clear whether they will be available for tomorrow’s encounter.

The two have also missed their club’s matches last week.

CAPS United’s assistant Mike Madzivanyika took charge of the team in the win over Chicken Inn while Philemon Mutyakureva was in charge of the Glamour Boys' win over Black Rhinos.

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