Mark Mathe sings Chitembwe praises

HARARE - CAPS United assistant coach Mark Mathe has sung the praises of his boss Lloyd Chitembwe, hailing him as an ultimate professional and not the hot head he is perceived to be.

Mathe took temporary charge of United after Briton Mark Harrison had quit Makepekepe in a huff to join Botswana side Township Rollers midway through the 2014 season.

However, Chitembwe — a hugely gifted but temperamental coach, whose hardline stance has often resulted in fall-outs with players opposed to his philosophy, bounced back as interim head coach of the Green Machine in October on a performance-based contract.

That effectively relegated Mathe to the assistant coach position, following an unconvincing string of results that yielded 10 points in eight matches.

Since Chitembwe assumed office, CAPS have only lost once in six matches and are in fifth position on the log, but more importantly, he has instilled discipline to the team at least according to Mathe.

“You should also appreciate that he came halfway through the season,” Mathe said at the club’s press conference.

“So I have been assisting him with player profiles and getting him up to speed with the business of the day.”

Whilst many thought they would be a tussle of egos in the United technical team, the former Highlanders gaffer insists all hands have been pulling in the same direction.

“It’s a team effort. But others out there are quick to criticise (saying) he is this and that. But I want to tell you I haven’t seen that side, what I have seen is a professional,” said Mathe before lauding the only player in the history of CAPS United to feature in all three league championship-winning teams in the post-independence era.

“I have met a completely different man. Lloyd has brought in character. Lloyd is very tough, very assertive, and disciplined.

“Players look up to him as a role model who has played for the national team, and this inspires them, he has added value to the side.”

Although they are out of running for the league title, United have a chance of finishing the season with some piece of silverware as they are scheduled to take on Hwange in the quarter-finals of the NetOne Easycall Cup at the National Sports Stadium tomorrow.

CAPS’ objective in this competition is straight forward as they need to win three matches in order to lift the trophy next month.

NetOne Easycall Cup Fixtures

Tomorrow: ZPC Kariba vs Chicken Inn (Nyamhunga), CAPS United vs Hwange (National Sports Stadium)

Sunday: FC Platinum vs Highlanders (Mandava), Dynamos vs How Mine (Rufaro)


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