PSL TEAMS IN
DOES the use of juju in football really enhance a player’s performance? Can football players in Zimbabwe take to the field without first visiting the muthi man for lucky charms?
Some people have argued over the years that African teams would be dominating world football if juju really worked, as superstition is abound on the continent that you cannot have a successful career as a player or coach without using some charms, magic or muthi.
Juju is an accepted reality in the African belief system and most misfortunes give credence to the belief. It’s used either to curry favour with those in authority or to disable the ability of a rival or enemy.
It comes and is used in different forms that include planting it by the goal area, blowing some powder onto the pitch, urinating on the pitch before kick-off, bathing in water mixed with muthi, smearing the muthi all over one’s body, drinking some concoctions and performing some bizarre rituals in the nude, among others.
Recent events in Zimbabwe’s topflight league have shown that teams actually believe in the use of sup e rnat u r a l powers in the game. It’s use, however, does not always guarantee success as three suspected juju incidents reported in the past two weekend match days proved. The first was the epic clash pitting the country’s two biggest sides Highlanders and Dynamos at Barbourfields Stadium, which Bosso won 2-1. When Dynamos players and officials alighted from their team bus at the stadium, they refused to enter the pitch via the away team’s dressing room. Instead, they chose to use a gate on the wing stand close to the Mpilo End. Dynamos believed that a spell had been cast in the visiting team’s dressing room that would have caused their players to perform badly and the use of a different entrance would render the muthi ineffective. As the result later proved, besides causing disorder, Dynamos’ superstitious stance turned out to be just psychological or mind games that didn’t work. A week later, Highlanders players faced another juju stunt that, however, seemed to affect their confidence against lowly Mutare City Rovers at the same venue.
Although Bosso went on to scrap a 2-1 win, the use of suspected juju by Mutare City players vexed the home team that saw them missing a yawning
Kennedy Ndebele Suspected juju found at Barbourfields Stadium on Sunday during the HighlandersMutare City Rovers Chibuku Super Cup first round match