Ex-CAPS stars crank up pressure on Twine

HARARE - CAPS United’s beleaguered president Twine Phiri has come under several pressure from the club’s former players and some of the team’s prominent fans, who called for immediate action to save the troubled team.

The ex-Green Machine players who spoke to the Daily News yesterday questioned Phiri’s vision at the club, with Makepekepe having gone nine years without major silverware and off-field issues often dominating newspaper headlines.

United have been rocked by another player revolt over outstanding dues for the second time this season, with the 6-0 mauling by FC Platinum in the ZNA Charity Shield on Saturday summing up the crisis at one of the country’s best supported football clubs.

Last week the Green Machine almost embarrassingly caused the abandonment of their league tie with Bantu Rovers after players initially refused to travel to Bulawayo over non-payment of dues.  

It was not the first time United players have resorted to industrial action after having also boycotted training earlier in the season.

United had this term launched a sustained title challenge since their last winning it in 2005, but the latest disturbances could derail that charge. 

Former CAPS United midfielder Friday Phiri was critical of Phiri’s management style at the club. 

“When we played for CAPS United we hardly knew about these kind of things,” Phiri said in reference to continued player strikes. 

“Everything was done smoothly and professional. During our days, football was just a mere sport but now it’s a full-time profession. You also need to understand the fact that times are hard everywhere in the country and that’s where I have a problem with Twine.

“There is no way he can do things on his own in an economy like ours. He should approach other people or dispose off some shares. CAPS is big brand and there are a lot of people out there who are willing to partner them.

“What is happening with the CAPS brand is just not right. He (Phiri) needs to admit that he has failed. Phiri needs to iron out differences with people like (co-share holder) Farai Jere. Jere is willing to help the club.

“At this rate, soon there will be no team to talk about. Imagine CAPS United losing 6-0 in a cup final. The players are not motivated and how do you expect them to perform?”

Jere re-joined CAPS this season after a dramatic fallout with Phiri last year, but reports suggests the wealthy businessman has not been contributing financially to the club since his return due to unresolved differences.

Carlos Max, another former CAPS players, however said the situation at the club was not “unique to CAPS United.”

Former Zimbabwe international Max, who played for both CAPS and Dynamos, said: “The thing is it’s not a CAPS problem, it’s a Zimbabwean football problem. You can’t depend on gate takings and be taken seriously. Even the price money is sad. You win $70 000 for winning the league title, but it’s already finished before you complete the African Champions League first round on transport and logistics alone.

“The biggest problem is that of ownership of clubs. Why would a company sponsor football if it’s owned by individuals?

“Just look at how many individual- run teams have fallen over the last years. Shooting Stars, Motor Action, where are they now?”

Max added that CAPS will continue to struggle if the issue of player welfare is not addressed. 

“It’s a smokescreen to say players are sabotaging the team, because if you look at it, football is a profession. If you don’t pay workers they won’t preform. How can they when they have families to feed?

“That’s one of the reason why I won’t coach football in Zimbabwe. How do you motivate hungry players?

“In one season CAPS sold six players, Method Mwanjali, Tafadzwa Rusike, Nyasha Mushekwi and the like, but the very next season players were on strike. What’s really happening here?”

Max bemoaned the lack of support for the club from former CAPS players.

“Twine Phiri used to be a CAPS supporter back in the day, but is he the only one? You are saying CAPS is 40 years old, but are you telling me there is no former player who can be in the club’s administration?”

Former striker Alois Bunjira, a CAPS title-winner back in 1996, said he could not put a finger on the problems affecting the club, but urged Phiri and Jere to “find each other” for the greater good of the club.

“I understand that people who have been helping the team with money want to have shares, but it’s difficult for Mr Phiri to do that. Remember this man has come a long way with the team,” Bunjira, now a presenter on local radio station Zifm Stereo, said.

“I think Phiri and Jere need to sit down and talk and find each other. I believe they can work together well.   

“The biggest problem now is there is no continuity in the team. There is no more junior policy. I think a solution needs to be found as soon as possible.”

Other former players who also spoke on condition of anonymity called on Phiri to let those capable of running the football club do so “before it’s too late.”  

Prominent CAPS fan, Fainos Mangena – an academic and journalist – blamed administrative shortcomings and Phiri’s “one-man show” for the problems bedevilling his team.

“To be honest with you, most of the problems currently facing CAPS United are administrative and having nothing to do with the finances of the club, since every club in this country is having financial challenges,” Mangena said.

“With the right administration, CAPS is a brand that can attract sponsors.  Away from money issues, I believe the powers that be at CAPS United have failed to do simple things in order to bring back the glory days at CAPS. My reasons for reaching such a conclusion are three-pronged:  The absence of a philosophy and identifiable culture; the dearth of junior policy and the absence of a CAPS United technical committee.

It appears to me that CAPS United is a one man show.  The owner is the executive and the board. There is no clear separation of powers.   One way to preserve the philosophy, culture and identity of a club and to revive junior structures is to appoint a technical committee that gives expert advice on the day today running of the club’s affairs. In particular, the committee will be responsible for recommending coaches that would oversee both junior and senior teams.”

Meanwhile, on Saturday CAPS United coach Taurai Mangwiro described his team’s embarrassing 6-0 defeat to FC Platinum in the ZNA Charity Shield as a disgrace.

CAPS finished the match with eight men after David Chipala, George Nyirenda and Hardlife Zvirekwi were sent off at Mandava Stadium. 

Chipala and Zvirekwi were expelled for insulting referee Rugare Kusosa while Nyirenda was send off after receiving a second yellow card for a bad tackle on man-of-the-match Obrey Chirwa.

“This is a disgrace to the CAPS United family. I just want to apologise for this and that is all I can say,” Mangwiro said.

Comments (5)

phiri MUST SELL THE TEAM TO JERE, asi isu madembare tiri KUFAYA

Harare - 8 September 2014

The problem with Caps is it is managed by individuals who are fourtunate enough to have a stable financial muscle but who somehow lack basic team management.They are proud to go to the press to say they have money but they are not willing part away with it for the best of the club which they purport to manage.If the club has become a burden float the shares of the club on the public market because instead of sprucing up the image of the club you are busy damaging it.Mind you the local premiership needs a strong Caps United to viable and ensure there is sufficient competition between rivals Dembare and Bosso.

GLAMOURBOY - 8 September 2014

as caps united family lets put our head together for the benefit of our lovely family.devine intervation

George Mudiwa - 8 September 2014


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