AFTER taking charge of football administration at Highlanders, veteran administrator Ndumiso “Yours Truly” Gumede left the club to join football administration at the highest level, Zifa, where he was in the board for more than 30 years.
By Brian Nkiwane
But after deciding not to seek re-election in the last Zifa elections, Gumede made a dramatic comeback to the club that gave him a grounding in football administration.
His coming back has not been all that rosy. A monster called “Dynamos” which has dominated Highlanders since 2006, the last time Bosso won the title under the guidance of Methembe Ndlovu, who is now director and coach at Bantu Rovers awaited him.
Standardsport hooked up with Gumede to try and find out what the club could be doing wrong that has allowed DeMbare to dominate them for the past eight years.
From the look of things, Highlanders lose the games even before getting into the field of play, prompting critics to suggest that Bosso needed to employ a psychologist.
However, Gumede shot down suggestions that Bosso should employ a psychologist to deal with players’ mentality before such crucial games.
“I am a psychologist myself. I studied psychology and sociology at the University of Zimbabwe where I finished in 1984. Are you telling me that because I am old then my qualification no longer works? What you are saying is true but remember we are second on the log table, four points behind DeMbare. It’s true we need someone to help our players mentally, but we cannot do that right now as we are bound to confuse our players. Maybe in the long run, preparing for next season we will have to consider that,” Gumede said.
Gumede added that during his earlier spell at Bosso, the Harare giants were far from being their closest rival.
“To be honest with you, Dynamos is a new phenomenon to us. We have never been dominated by Dynamos like this in the past. We had better opponents that gave us a good run for our money and DeMbare was not anywhere near that,” said Gumede.
He added; “Our biggest rivals were Zimbabwe Saints. At one point we had to play a Cup final match in Harare but it was pitting Highlanders and Zimbabwe Saints, both teams from Bulawayo because of the rivalry.”
He however admitted that there are certain club rituals that players and coaches look down upon and might be contributing to some of the defeats.
“We used to know that all team players including the technical team would not see a woman two days before a match until the match is played, ukuzila. This would force everybody to get into the match with that hunger which you will then vent on your opponent. But all this is gone.”
Asked whether Highlanders as a club had rituals that they do, Gumede dismissed any works of juju before adding that juju does not work in football.
“If juju could work in football, countries like Nigeria and others could have won the World Cup so many times. In 1974, the then Zaire went to the World Cup with nine traditional healers (sangomas) who were only eating monkey meat but that did not even make a difference. Actually in their first match they were given a thorough beating by nine goals to no reply.”
Gumede however admitted that they do believe in Christianity.
“That is the reason why you see our players making a big circle just before kickoff to have a short prayer. Like what Dynamos do, they kneel down on the goal line to pray. I think you have seen that even our coach is an ardent Christian.”
The heavily-built football administrator ended by warning DeMbare that this was just a passing phase.
“This is just a passing phase. We will come for them. What we need is just to win one game and that will be over,” concluded Gumede.