Byo City coach in fixing storm Mujokoro fingered as Border struck down by Byo City
Winning is what matters, not good football: Akbay
A BIZARRE 50th minute decision by match officials that denied Tsholotsho a clear penalty following a handling incident inside the box by Caps United defender Dennis Dauda overshadowed the Harare side’s narrow win in a Castle Lager Premiership match at Luveve Stadium yesterday.
Caps United scored in the 71st minute through their bulldozing Hwange-born striker Dominic Chungwa after a brilliant move started by Joel Ngodzo, who made a dazzling run outside the box and in the process drew the Tsholotsho defenders. Ngodzo then quickly laid the ball back to Valentine Musarurwa, who spotted the overlapping Hardlife Zvirekwi from the blind side. Zvirekwi sent in a hard and low grounder that Chungwa just pushed into the net.
However, Tsholotsho, whose game plan had worked for them, felt hard done by the 50th minute penalty denial.
An in-swinger came from the right side and in an effort to clear, Dauda handled with his outstretched arm. Gweru referee Thomas Masaa did not blow even when first assistant referee Melody Ncube flagged and continued to wave his flag to draw the attention of Masaa. Ncube then put his flag down just as Masaa was also turning to look at him. The two officials exchanged a thumbs up sign, much to the astonishment of fans.
“It could have been the turning point for us, but referees are human beings too that make mistakes,” said Tsholotsho assistant coach Xolani Mafikeni after the match.
Tsholotsho though could have scored in open play had their strikers, particularly Collins Dhuwa, been more composed in front of goal.
In the seventh minute, the wasteful Dhuwa’s tame and ill-advised shot from outside the box rolled weakly at Caps United goalkeeper Edmore Sibanda.
Two minutes later, Makepekepe almost opened the scoring after left-winger Valentine Bamusi dispatched a speculative and dipping shot that almost embarrassed Chang Mariyoni in goals for Tsholotsho.
The visitors continued to exert pressure on the home side’s defence with their best chance falling in the 14th minute.
Zvirekwi, who was playing on the right of defence, but used as an attacking link, released a long calculated pass to the onrushing Phineas Bamusi on the left side. Bamusi charged forward and delivered a low cross that a cluster of Tsholotsho defenders and Caps United forwards took turns to miss. The ball fell to an unmarked Moses Muchenje, whose grounder was cleared for a corner.
In the 23rd minute, Dhuwa was again presented with another chance to put Tsholotsho ahead, but his shot from inside the box gave Sibanda no problems following a move orchestrated by outstanding debutant Zimiseleni Moyo, who had a good game.
Four minutes before the breather, Moyo was again involved in another Tsholotsho attack that was again fluffed. The championship winning left footer with Zanaco of Zambia was at it again a minute before halftime when his industry saw a through ball being laid to Blessing Sibanda, who beat his marker for pace and placed the ball through the legs of goalkeeper Edmore Sibanda and it rolled goal wards.
Blessing somehow slowed down, probably thinking the ball was going straight in, but it changed direction and went out for a goal kick.
The second half was a rather dull affair except in the last 15 minutes when Caps United threw everything they had and it was from one of these raids that they grabbed the goal and with it maximum points. HIGHLANDERS coach Erol Akbay says he is mainly concerned about winning more than playing good football that produces no positive results.
The Dutchman also believes Bosso’s recent barren spell will end sooner than most critics think.
Akbay said the absence of key players was a contributing factor to their miserable run since the 2-0 loss to Chicken Inn that has seen the Bulawayo giants picking up just five points out of a possible 15.
Just one goal in five games is all there is to show for third-placed Bosso, who have also somehow benefited from a poor run by chief rivals Dynamos.
Bosso take on Mutare City Rovers at Barbourfields Stadium this afternoon in a must-win game for the team in general and Akbay in particular.
“What is important for us is winning, why worry about good football while losing? For us winning is the only language we speak and what matters,” said Akbay.
He defended his style of play that has mostly seen Highlanders sitting back and allowing their opponents to come at them before trying to catch them on the break. That system has failed him three times this year.
“In modern football, you have to defend and attack only if certain of a kill. I know that people will always want to see us dominating, but you can’t win a game — like that if you don’t have the players for such play,” said Akbay.
Bosso’s poor financial position resulted in the club not beefing their squad with experienced and quality players.
Highlanders only brought in Allan Gahadzikwa, who was offloaded by Caps United where he spent the better part of the first half of this season warming the bench.
They also recalled their junior player Nhlanhla Ndlovu from Division One side Amagagasi and thrust him into the deep-end of the attack together with the equally inexperienced Prince Dube.
The two youngsters have the potential of forming one of the deadliest strike force in the land given time, but the Bosso fans are not renowned for patience.
The coach is still within his target of a top four finish, but some fans believe the ultimate prize is still within reach and that has put a bit of pressure on the technical bench and the inexperienced players.
Akbay said they had spent the week working on their basic game, which some of the newly introduced players had not grasped.
“We are missing a number of players and we are trying to get our basic game back with these players. Throughout the week we have been practising that and these players have to play the way we want and if they do that then I assure you, Highlanders will be back to their old self again,” said Akbay. — @skhumoyo2000 Border Strikers 0-1 Byo City BORDER Strikers yesterday suffered a third defeat at Dulivhadzimu Stadium in a match that was marred by match fixing allegations. Bulawayo City assistant coach Farai Mujokoro was accused of bribing Border Strikers goal minder Talent Sande with $300 to let them win the game by five goals. According to WhatsApp messages allegedly between Mujokoro and Sande, the money was supposed to be collected by Sande’s sister from Bulawayo City kit manager Gift Mvala. However, Mvala walked into a trap before kickoff when he allegedly handed the money to Border Strikers treasurer Gift Jera, who was in the company of a woman posing as Sande’s sister. The matter was reported to the police before kickoff, forcing Mujokoro to disappear from the stadium at halftime. Mujokoro’s phone went unanswered when Chronicle Sport contacted him last night. Sande said he was disturbed when Mujokoro approached him and he alerted his superiors, who then set a trap. “I am still young and I want to build a career based on integrity. Such corrupt tendencies are destroying the game of football in the country. I hope authorities will deal decisively with this issue,” said Sande. Emmanuel Mandiranga scored the solitary goal in the sixth minute that gave the visitors maximum points. Bulawayo City coach Philani Ncube said he was unaware of the match fixing attempts, although the WhatsApp messages allegedly indicate that he gave Mujokoro the nod. “I cannot comment on matters of hearsay that haven’t been brought to my attention,” said Ncube. Zenzo Moyo, Bulawayo City vice-chairman, said police should investigate the allegations.
“As a team, we don’t tolerate match fixing. Football should be the winner and the responsible authorities should conduct investigations into the allegations.
“We are yet to get full details about the matter,” Moyo said.
Border Strikers secretary Rodlet Chigwinya said they were worried about the match fixing allegations.
“This is killing sport. We played the match fully aware of our opponents’ efforts to influence the result,” Chigwinya said.
Erol Akbay Thomas Masaa