Home » Sports » Winning, Just Like Charity, Should Start At Home

MIDFIELD gman Stephen Alimenda says Dynamos’ poor run at the National Sports Stadium has nothing to do with the team’s relocation from Rufaro and has challenged the defending champions to up their game when they host Harare City tomorrow.

The Harare giants will be looking for their first league victory at their new home ground to get their campaign in defence of the Castle Lager Premiership title on course.

Dynamos have collected six points in their opening three matches and are within striking distance of the top three — Highlanders, Hwange and ZPC Kariba — who sit on seven.

While the prospects look bright for coach Callisto Pasuwa and his charges in these early days, unlike in the last three seasons when they started off slowly, the Glamour Boys family have been worried by their performance at home after losing their last two games at the National Sports Stadium.

DeMbare are yet to register victory, in the local competitions, since they moved to the giant stadium at the beginning of the season and lost the Independence Cup final to FC Platinum last Friday, just days after they had crashed to a 1-0 defeat at the hands of Premiership newboys ZPC Kariba in a league match.

In contrast, the Glamour Boys have won their two games away at Barbourfields after beating How Mine 1-0 in their first assignment of the league season and then returning to destroy newboys Bantu Rovers 3-1 on Easter Monday.

Alimenda, who has been enjoying his game in the defensive midfield role, yesterday said the Harare giants needed to apply themselves more and make the best of the opportunities that come their way at home.

The DeMbare midfielder urged the club’s supporters to continue rallying behind the team as they continue in search of a winning formula.

“It’s not about the ground or the anything. It’s only that things sometimes don’t work out as we would want but we are definitely going to make it right,” said Alimenda.

“The National Sports Stadium is our home ground and we have to use it to our aantage. We are happy playing there because it’s our home.

“It’s not like we have been performing badly but it was a matter of making blunders and we got punished for that.

“If you look at the games that we lost, we conceded late on both occasions and it could be that we failed to concentrate up to the end and we also paid for the chances that we couldn’t utilise.

“Our opponents would attack our goal maybe once or twice and they scored. Then when one looks at the results in isolation, all the hard work we put in will not be noticed.

“Otherwise, in terms of play, I think we have been doing well even at the National Sports Stadium and I hope this time we will end up getting goals.”

Dynamos strikers, in particular, have been struggling in front of goal.

Pasuwa has played his five forwards in all the three league matches they have played but none of them has been able to find the target after 270 minutes of open play.

The technical team should be very worried by the trend as midfielders Devon Chafa, Cliff Sekete and defender Sydney Linyama were on target in the 3-1 win over Bantu Rovers in Bulawayo early this week.

The last meeting between the two sides ended in a 4-2 penalty shoot-out win for Dynamos after both sides had fired blanks in the regulation time of the Independence Cup semi-final.

Alimenda said City, who finished third last season when DeMbare “miraculously” won the title on the last day of the championship, have proved tough opponents for the Glamour Boys ever since they joined the top-flight league in 2012.

City, however, have had a disappointing start to their new campaign after losing three straight games to Chicken Inn, CAPS United and ZPC Kariba to remain trapped at the bottom of the table.

“We don’t look at how Harare City have been playing. Whether they are playing badly is none of our business.

“But this is going to be a tricky game because they have been losing and obviously they would want to win this match. Plus every game is a new game and we take it as it is.

“We have great chances of winning, though, because everyone is putting in maximum effort. The coach himself is spoilt for choice on which players to field.

“We are all raring to go and the good thing is that the curse of injuries which affected us recently appear to be fading away,” said Alimenda.

DeMbare will be without midfielder Sekete, who had a good outing at Bantu Rovers last week, only to pick a groin injury. Skipper Murape Murape is also not available for selection as he joined the list of casualties that include Masimba Mambare, Ocean Mushure and Tawanda Muparati.

City have been having problems of their own in their camp.

Besides the injury scourge that has left about five regular players on the sidelines, coach Bigboy Mawiwi has reportedly found himself fighting unseen forces bent on sabotaging progress.

The Sunshine Boys are coming from a morale-sapping home loss to newboys ZPC Kariba and Mawiwi has so much work on his hands to get the boys’ confidence back on the high.

One of the senior players Nathan Ziwini told The Herald that they are aiming a victory over Dynamos to turn around their fortunes.

Ziwini, who had a short but disappointing stint at Dynamos, believes they have a g side but were just unfortunate the results were not coming. “It’s a phase that we are going through for now but we hope to bounce back. We have to start winning games and I hope the match against Dynamos will be our turning point.

“Looking at the last games, I think we have been playing well and dominating but the results were not coming. We need to convert chances and would need all the luck,” said Ziwini.

The former Gunners and Dynamos player, however, has been battling injury alongside Martin Vengesai, Maxwell Nyamupangedengu, Munyaradzi Kunyarimwe and Mhleli Sibanda.

The quintet’s availability for tomorrow’s match is still shrouded in uncertainty.

Source : The Herald