DeMbare in emo­tional af­fair

The Sunday Mail (Zimbabwe) - - FRONT PAGE - Makom­borero Mu­timukulu Sports Ed­i­tor

THE team of seven mil­lion souls could only at­tract 700 pay­ing fans when it de­cided to host a com­mem­o­ra­tion match for the nine who died in the line of duty on June 11 last year. Con­se­quently the match against Yadah Stars, which was sup­posed to raise money for the fam­i­lies of a group that has now be­come known as the DeMbare Nine, was a lose mak­ing ven­ture.

In­stead of some green­backs the fam­i­lies re­ceived flow­ers and Dy­namos flags to com­mem­o­rate the pass­ing away of their beloved ones as the mis­sion to fol­low their team to As­cot Sta­dium turned tragic.

For Garikai Chibika, who lost his sis­ter Pa­tience in the ac­ci­dent that claimed seven lives on the spot, the ges­ture by DeMbare was price­less.

“Some­times it’s not about the money but the thought that counts.

I know that wher­ever she is Pa­tience is smil­ing be­cause Dy­namos is remembering her to­gether with eight other fans who died as they fol­lowed their beloved team to Gweru,” he said.

And as fate, or the Premier Soc­cer League fix­tures, would have it DeMbare are on the road to Cha­pungu, ex­actly a week af­ter June 11.

It’s a game that sud­denly means much more than three points to Dy­namos.

“This is a very im­por­tant match; it is a game that re­minds us a lot about those nine sup­port­ers. We would want to try and ap­pease them with a pos­i­tive re­sult.

“But as you know, ev­ery team that plays Dy­namos raises its game and here is a Cha­pungu side that has not con­ceded in seven games so we are brac­ing our­selves for a tough en­counter,” said DeMbare coach Lloyd Mu­tasa.

Mu­tasa watched his team stage a Thurs­day night humdinger against Ngezi Plat­inum Stars 3-2 at the Na­tional Sports Sta­dium and will be hop­ing that his boys kick on at As­cot.

“Our at­tack­ing prow­ess will be tested against an or­gan­ised de­fence but we go to Gweru with a pos­i­tive at­ti­tude af­ter a good run,” noted the Dy­namos coach.

DeMbare have won four on the bounce and edged this fix­ture 2-1 last term with King Nasama scor­ing the win­ner.

Nasama will not fea­ture at As­cot as he bat­tles in­jury while the Glam­our Boys’ pin up boy Den­ver Mukamba could be rel­e­gated to the bench af­ter fiz­zling out against Ngezi in mid­week.

Mukamba scored a beauty in that game but that was his only mean­ing­ful con­tri­bu­tion and Mu­tasa con­cedes that the for­ward is lack­ing match fit­ness.

“With Den­ver it’s a jour­ney he is do­ing well in the early stages of the game but as the match pro­gresses his con­tri­bu­tion be­comes min­i­mal and we are work­ing on mak­ing him a 90-minute player.

“Den­ver has been scor­ing, he scored a good goal against Ngezi and the play­ers look up to him but we need to have him through­out the game.

“How­ever, one thing we are guar­an­teed with the boy is big match tem­per­a­ment so we can al­ways call on him. His be­hav­iour has also im­proved and we are con­fi­dent that we will get the best of him soon,” said Mu­tasa.

Cha­pungu are en­joy­ing a seven match un­beaten run and have been un­yield­ing at the back.

Gaffer Tendai Chikuni re­vealed that a 0-4 maul­ing away to cham­pi­ons Caps United on April 29 this year made him do an An­to­nio Conte.

Conte, the coach of English Premier­ship kings Chelsea, fa­mously switched to 3-5-2 af­ter a 0-3 hum­bling at Arsenal. “Af­ter the de­feat to Caps United I sat down and said ‘no we can­not con­tinue to be this gen­er­ous in our de­fend­ing and ex­pect to sur­vive in the premier­ship,’’ said Chikuni. “I changed the sys­tem and in­sisted on not giv­ing the op­po­si­tion too much space at the back and it has been work­ing well.

“But for Dy­namos we have a dif­fer­ent game plan, to us this is a cup fi­nal. As coaches we have done our part and it’s up to the boys to show how much they want this one.”

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