Scramble for coaches

HARARE – With the 2017 Caste Lager Premiership season all done and dusted, all the attention has now shifted to the clubs’ hunt for new coaches to lead them in the 2018 season.

After a disappointing season under Dutchman Erol Akbay, Highlanders are looking for a new coach.

Akbay announced that he would be not renewing his contract and swiftly returned to the Netherlands after guiding Bosso to a sixth place finish.

Bosso are currently in negotiations with former coaches Madinda Ndlovu and Amini Soma-Phiri, who are the front runners for the vacancy.

Amin Soma Phiri

Amini Soma-Phiri

Ndlovu is willing to come back to the club on one condition — Highlanders pay him outstanding dues from his previous stints in charge of the club.

Soma-Phiri was part of the previous technical team before he eventually fell out with Akbay and was expelled midway through the just-ended season.

Previously, Soma-Phiri had taken charge of the club on a caretaker basis following Bongani Mafu’s sacking midway through the 2015 season.

Bosso have also been linked with Chicken Inn coach Rahman Gumbo, who could make a return to the club which he won two championships with at the turn of the millennium.

Efforts to get a comment form Bosso chief executive Nhlanhla Dube proved fruitless as he was said to be in marathon meetings for the better part of yesterday.

Chicken Inn secretary-general Tavengwa Hara said they have not yet decided on Gumbo’s fate after he led the side to a fourth-place finish.

“His contract is ending on December 31 and both parties haven’t sat down to discuss on a possibility of a renewal yet,” Hara told the Daily News.

“As an executive, we are still reviewing our season and once we are done in the coming days, we will then sit down with the technical department to discuss the way forward.”

After a disappointing 2017 campaign, ZPC Kariba has been heavily-linked with CAPS United coach Lloyd Chitembwe but the Green Machine’s president Farai Jere is not prepared to let go of his most prized asset.  

“For the record ... Chitembwe is a CAPS United coach. He has two years left on his contract and we are currently negotiating to extend the current deal. Chitembwe can never leave CAPS for another team, it’s not possible; he’s our umbilical cord,” Jere told the Daily News.

“How can a club start negotiations with someone who is contracted somewhere? We have never received any communication from ZPC and in any case we are not willing to let Chitembwe go.  

“He remains our coach and we have long-term plans to make the club the best in the country. Believe me we will be back in Africa in 2019 and we are working towards achieving that goal.”

The narrative has been that once Chitembwe leaves CAPS, the Green Machine would then poach Tonderai Ndiraya from Ngezi Platinum Stars.

However, Ngezi Platinum spokesperson Chiedza Mupfumira said Ndiraya is staying put and they are already planning for the 2019 season.

“The club board meeting held last week to review the 2017 season confirmed they were happy with the coach and his technical team, therefore there are no changes being made to the team which shall continue  with Ndiraya,” Mupfumira said.