Harare City prioritise Chibuku

HARARE – With the Chibuku Super Cup final around the corner, Harare City coach Mark Harrison is set to give the club’s emerging talent a run in the league against Highlanders at Barbourfields Stadium on Sunday.

After the clash with Bosso, the Sunshine Boys will then start preparations for a potentially-explosive final against Triangle United next weekend.

As a result, Harrison has decided to field a second-string side against the Bulawayo giants on Sunday.

Already this season, Harrison has used some league matches to hand first-team debuts to youngsters like Tellmore Pio, Gareth Madhake, Macdonald Mukunga and Calum English-Brown among others.

Pio and Madhake have gone on to establish themselves as regular starters in the Sunshine Boys’ line up.

“We have got a squad with a lot of young players who graduated from the Cubs and they have been working all season with us,” he said.

“Obviously, we have got the cup final coming the following week so we have to be cautious of that and it’s a long trip down to Bulawayo.

“So it’s an opportunity for me to rest players for the final and also to give exposure to the young ones and there is no better place to playing at Barbourfields against Highlanders. Big stadium, big crowd, big atmosphere and big test but I’m not afraid for them.

“I think now is the right time. I hope they go there, enjoy themselves and express themselves. We will definitely have a young bench on Sunday.”

Harrison feels it’s important to give exposure to these youngsters as part of their progress.

“Of course we would like to win our remaining matches, but I would like to try and expose the youngsters a little bit because it’s part of their development,” he added.

“The thing is you got to protect the young players, they need to be played at the right time, in the right place and in the right manner and I think we do that properly here to be honest.

“Our young players are growing nicely here. It’s not just about playing football matches. It’s about the training environment, it’s about the senior players supporting the younger players, and it’s about educating the young players breeding them into good professional footballers as well as good human beings and that’s what we want to do and we are achieving it nicely.”

FIXTURES

Tomorrow: Yadah FC v Bulawayo City (Rufaro), ZPC Kariba v Chapungu (Nyamhunga), Chicken Inn v Black Rhinos (Luveve), Nichrut FC v Herentals (Ascot),

Sunday: Highlanders v Harare City (Barbourfields), Mutare City Rovers v CAPS United (Vhengere), Shabanie Mine v FC Platinum (Maglas), Dynamos v Triangle United (Rufaro), Ngezi Platinum Stars v Bulawayo Chiefs (Baobab)

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