CAPS battle to keep stars

HARARE – Harare giants CAPS United face a mammoth task to retain some of their key players amid indications that rival Premier Soccer League (PSL) clubs are ready to pounce.

A host of Makepekepe key players will be out of contract at the end of the month and according to football rules, they are allowed to negotiate with other clubs for possible moves away from the Green Machine.

The Green Machine, who finished fifth on the log table a distant 14 points behind eventual winners FC Platinum, find themselves in a fix as some of their key players like Dominic Chungwa, Devon Chafa, Moses Muchenje, Joel Ngodzo and Valentine Musarurwa among others could all leave for free during this off-season as their contracts are set to expire on December 31.

Soccer Star of the Year finalist Chafa is already being linked with a move to Ngezi Platinum Stars.

The Daily News understands that Ngezi Platinum Stars have earmarked Chafa as their main target as they seek to assemble a strong squad that can fight for the title next season.

After surrendering the title fight to FC Platinum towards the end of the season, Ngezi coach Tonderai Ndiraya has since set his sights on winning the championship next season and is not leaving any stone unturned in a bid to achieve his set targets.

Chafa was one of the standout players for Makepekepe both in the league and the African Champions League where he put in some outstanding performances.

Chungwa has also been linked with a move outside the country after he bagged the Golden Boot award with 17 goals.

Striker John Zhuwawo, who showed a lot of potential after he was registered by the club in the second half of the season, is believed to be nearing a move to South Africa’s Absa Premiership side Ajax Cape Town.

However, CAPS United chief executive Cuthbert Chitima yesterday insisted the club has already agreed in principle with most of their players to renew their contracts.

“We have already spoken with the majority of players whose contracts are running out at the end of the season,” Chitima told the Daily News.

“We are actually expecting to finalise everything by Friday next week. We have already agreed in principle with most of these players and what is left is for them to sign. We are not worried at all, everything is under control.”

The Green Machine were left a rather weakened side following the departure of such players like Abbas Amidu, Ronald Chitiyo and Ronald Pfumbidzayi following their impressive performances in the champions league.

Defender Dennis Dauda was also sold to fellow Premiership side Yadah FC due to disciplinary reasons.