Caf turns down CAPS request

HARARE - The Confederation of African Football (Caf) has turned down CAPS United’s request to shift their match against Algerian side USM Alger to Africa Day.

The Green Machine are scheduled to host USM Alger next week on Wednesday in their second Group B match of the African Champions League.

Makepekepe intended to play the match on Africa Day in order to attract a huge crowd since it will be a public holiday.  

However, the request was turned down in a letter which was written to the Zimbabwe Football Association (Zifa), who had sent the application on behalf of the Green Machine.

Lloyd Chitembwe’s charges got off their campaign in the Africa Champions League to a false start losing 2-0 to Egyptian giants Zamalek, in Alexandria last Friday.

The reigning league champions had done well to keep the White Knights at bay but were finally undone by two second half headers from Bassem Morsi and substitute Stanley Ohawuchi.

That scenario has left the Green Machine with a must win scenario in their next game against USM Alger to keep their hopes of progressing to the knockout stages alive.

But before they could think of their second Group B match against the Algerians, CAPS have a date against ZPC Kariba in the local Premiership this Thursday.

After Thursday’s match in Kariba, the Green Machine travel to Bulawayo to face Chicken Inn before their clash against USM Alger on Wednesday next week.

CAPS coach Chitembwe is not happy with how the domestic fixture has been structured as it disadvantages them in the fronts they are fighting from.

“Imagine, we are going to play four games in a space of 14 days, it’s not practical; it’s illogical and we begin to wonder if people are really making football decisions but all the same we will just have to manage the situation and continue,” Chitembwe said.

“I think it’s a problem that we have as a nation, instead of incentivising a team that is representing the nation, people still want to find ways to punish that team.

“We begin to wonder, if it is about football or there are other issues involved.

“Because if it’s about football, it is really the wrong way of doing it because in as far as I am concerned you should also look at the health of the players.”

Makepekepe will, however, be hoping that the Premier Soccer League suspends their clash against Chicken Inn to afford them enough time to prepare for their game against Alger.

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