CAPS United will be the last of Zimbabwe’s three traditional giants to kick-start their 2015 Premier Soccer League (PSL) campaign with this afternoon’s visit to Ascot for a date against debutants WhaWha FC.
BY MICHAEL MADYIRA
Other giants, Dynamos and Highlanders, served their campaigns yesterday, making known their season intentions.
It has been a decade since United last won the league title and Mark Harrison with his charges would be making the first step in their bid to reclaim the lost glory.
But they face unfamiliar opponents who are trudging into the more demanding PSL terrain for the first time.
Following back-to-back defeats to Dynamos in their last two pre-season games, a defeat for CAPS in Gweru would definitely be morale-sapping.
“It is always good to win the first game of the season, as well as the next couple of matches,” said Harrison.
Harrison arrives at Ascot with little information on their opponents, and the Englishman is wary of an upset.
“I expect a tough game. Obviously WhaWha would be out to prove a point. Just like us, they want a good start. But we are ready for them. We worked hard in our pre-season although we have not shaped up to the full level I want. But we are getting there.”
Harrison’s assistants, Mark Mathe and Brenna Msiska, could however prove handy with their knowledge of the football mind of WhaWha technical head Lloyd Mutasa.
Mutasa is known to prefer a quick passing game, a system Harrison is also trying to introduce at CAPS.
With the experience of captain Hardlife Zvirekwi, chief marksman Roderick Mutuma and veteran foward Leonard Tsipa, United appear on paper to be too strong for WhaWha.
The prison and correctional services team have forwards Caleb Masocha and Michael Mageja as the most experienced players at the club, boasting of more than five seasons in the top-flight football league.
Most of their players are PSL debutants but Mutasa feels they can draw a positive result from the giants.
“I am sure we have prepared well for the season. I always tell my players that we are in the PSL to compete and the more they play, the more they expose themselves. In football you learn every day. It is possible to win this game. The youngsters would be motivated if we win,” said Mutasa.