By Muziwethu Hadebe
BULAWAYO CITY FOOTBALL CLUB dance with the Premier Soccer League ended last Thursday after a three year stay in top flight football.
The security department in the City of Bulawayo, who started the project as a social football club and later registered the team in the Bulawayo Province Division three, will be disappointed that those who took over the project have failed to keep the team in Zimbabwe’s elite league.
For a team that had a yearly budget of One Million dollars, the residents who were consulted little on the team, perhaps only just through the councillors will question the wisdom of spending on such a team when the roads are not in a good state, the major stadiums in the City needing renovations and the City’s water situation needing a re look. The residents are likely to ask more questions on the project continuing, if the team’s leadership does not change its approach and take the team to the residents.
Many blame the fall of the team on a leadership gap that allowed outsiders to control the club in terms of appointments and player recruitment. It was a “captured” football club those who follow the local game have said.
City played in Division three as the Bulawayo Golden Birds in 2013 and finished second to Lobengula Stars to gain promotion into Division two for the 2014 season. They won the Division two title in that year and competed in Division one in 2015.
Coached by seasoned coach and council employee Philani “Beefy” Ncube, who was assisted by former Amazulu and Highlanders midfielder Farari Mujokoro they won the league in style and got promoted into the PSL for the 2016 season.
“Beefy” and Mujokoro were retained as the coaches in the PSL while Try Ncube was drafted as one of the assistant coaches in the coaching set up.
The duo of “Beefy” and Mujokoro lasted 17 matches and were suspended from football after they were linked to the Beitbridge- Border Strikers match fixing scandal and Try Ncube was to take charge for the rest of the season as City finished on 8th position.
With the CAF A coaching licence dilemma Try Ncube could not take charge of the team in the 2017 season as he played a behind the scenes role while Mandla Mpofu took over and was to be in charge for the whole season and finished 14th on the log, surviving relegation on the last day with the assistance of Tavaka Gumbo.
Mpofu was fired at the start of the 2018 season as City appointed Darlington Dodo who lasted only eight matches.
Dodo won one match, drew one and lost six matches in the eight matches in charge.
Bekithemba Ndlovu then briefly took charge of two matches beating Nichrut 3-0 and losing to Chicken Inn 1-2 until the appointment of Amin Soma Phiri who was to last 10 matches winning two, drawing two and losing six matches.
Ndlovu was to take charge until the relegation of the team; he lost seven consecutive league matches and was booted out of the Chibuku Super Cup by Harare City.
He however is unbeaten in the last four matches, getting a draw and three consecutive wins at Babourfields stadium over Ngezi Platinum Stars, Highlanders and ZPC Kariba. It means in 13 matches in charge Ndlovu has won 4, drawn 1 and lost 8 matches.
Besides the head coach the Technical bench has Barry Daka who plays an advisory role at the club. Try Ncube is still in the set up alongside former Bosso player Johannes Ngodzo as well as the addition of former Amazulu player Golding Dube in recent matches.
Despite the senior team struggles the club has set up a juniors team which has been doing well in the Bulawayo Province Junior League.
Bulawayo City FC PSL record
Year P W D L F A PTS POSITION
2016 30 11 8 11 27 27 41 8
2017 34 11 6 17 37 44 39 14
2018 31 7 4 20 27 42 25 relegated with 3 matches to go
Triangle United 5-1 Nichrut
Triangle United who are having a decent season under the guidance of Taurai Mangwiro reached the semi-finals of the Chibuku Super Cup for the first time with this convincing victory over new comers Nichrut at Gibbo stadium on Sunday.
The “Sugar Sugar” boys who did not score in the first round and had to knock Shabanie Mine out of the competition in a penalty shoot-out took a 2-0 lead at the break with goals from Ralph Kawondera in the 21st minute and Collins Dhuwa after 35 minutes.
Washington Pakamisa pulled one back for the visitors six minutes into the second half as they gave themselves hope in this match after a second match on the road in this cup.
Triangle were however the more dominant team and added three more goals as Kawondera completed his brace in the 57th minute.
Russell Madamombe picked his second goal of the Chibuku Super Cup since 2014, while former Hwange striker Delic Murimba scored the 5th goal in the 89th minute.
Dynamos 1-1 Herentals (Dynamos won 5-4 on Penalties)
DYNAMOS advanced to the semi-finals of the Chibuku Super Cup for the second time since the return of the cup in 2014 with a 5-4 penalty shoot out victory over Herentals at Rufaro stadium on Sunday.
Quality Kangadze put Dynamos ahead in the 24th minute. Blessing Majarira equalised from the spot in the 31st minute after Jimmy Tigere hacked him down in the box.
On Saturday Harare City beat Highlanders 2-0 to make it to their 5th Chibuku Super Cup semi-final out of the five since 2014.
Wilfred Muvirimi and William Manondo scored for city as Manondo reached 13 goals in this tournament since 2014.
Caps united played to a goalless draw with Chapungu, but advanced to their first semi-final after a 5-4 win on penalties.
The tournament is now 20 goals shy of the 200 mark since it returned in 2014.
Semi Finalist for 28 October;
Harare City- 5th semi-final place
Dynamos- 2nd semi-final place
Triangle – 1st semi-final place
Caps united- 1st semi-final place
Harare City 2-0 Highlanders( Wilfred Muvirimi, William Manondo)
Caps 0-0 Chapungu( Caps won 5-4 on penalties)
Today, @ Half Time
Dynamos 1-1Herentals( Quality Kangadze 24′)(Blessing Maunganidze 31′ P)
Triangle 2-0 Nichrut(Ralph Kawondera 21′, Collins Dhuwa 35′)
What the goals mean,
Harare City reach their 5th Chibuku Super Cup semi final since 2014.
Caps United reach their 1st Chibuku Super Cup semi Final since 2014.
Both Qaulity and Blessing with their first Chibuku Super Cup goals.
Ralph Kawondera with his first Chibuku Super Cup goal, the first for Dhuwa as well as the total Chibuku Super goals reach 176 since 2014.
51 min Washington Pakamisa pulled one back for Nichrut to make it Triangle 2-1 Nichrut.
57 min Kawondera with a brace as his header makes it Triangle 3-1.
73 min Russell madamombe makes it 4-1, his second Chibuku cup goal since the return of the cup in 2014.
89 min Aggripa Murimba makes it 5-1 for Triangle.
FT Traingle 5-1 Nichrut( Ralph Kawondera 2, Collins Dhuwa, Russell Madamombe and Agrippa Murimba)
FT Dynamos 1-1 Herentals( Quality Kangadze)( Blessing Maunganidze P)- Now on Penalty shoot outs.