BY MUNYARADZI MADZOKERE
CAPS United coach Lloyd Chitembwe will be banking on his knowledge of the Harare City profile as he begins his tenure at the Green Machine with a clash against his former paymasters at the National Sports Stadium this afternoon.
Chitembwe dumped Harare City barely three weeks ago to re-join CAPS United, the team that he helped to the league title in 2016 after two years with the City Fathers having helped them survive relegation when he joined them back in 2019.
Sadly for Chitembwe his tenure at Harare City was affected by the Covid-19 outbreak, which saw the local league fail to take off for more than a year and a half.
And now his first game in charge of the struggling Harare giants is against Harare City.
“It’s obviously a very difficult game, but fortunately enough we know the profile of the football team and I think Clive Rupiya is central to it. When you have Rupiya you have one of the top strikers in the country at the moment,” Chitembwe said ahead of today’s match.
“They also have Tatenda Tavengwa, who I think is an upcoming great midfield player if he continues the way he has been working. In Marshall Machazane they have a dependable and reliable defender.
“At the same time we have got some very good players within our group.
“We are looking forward to the match and I think it will be a very interesting football match,” he added.
Chitembwe led Harare City to the quarterfinals of the Chibuku Super Cup before the team was dumped out by newcomers Cranborne Bullets resulting in him jumping ship to rejoin Makepekepe.
In the matches between the two teams in the Chibuku Cup, the first match ended in a one all draw in May while Harare City won 1-0 in September.
CAPS will be looking to steady the ship after playing a goalless draw away to ZPC Kariba in the first match of the season as they played without a coach following the sacking of Darlington Dodo before the start of the league season.
Chitembwe’s former assistant coach Tarisai Kaseke is now in charge at Harare City and will be looking to get one over his former boss.
“That game has a psychological effect on the boys. It motivates them since they are playing against their former coach and CAPS United being a big team just like Highlanders and Dynamos these games are self-motivating. Unfortunately these days there are no spectators at the games but the players really want to showcase what they are made of,” Kaseke said.
Kaseke will be without key players in Hastings Chapusha who is injured and Captain Marshall Machazane who is attending to family matters.
The unheralded coach is happy with the way the players have adapting to his methods.
One of Harare City’s senior players William Manondo is understood to have crossed the floor and is currently training with CAPS United.