Highlanders on top but . . .


BARBOURFIELDS Stadium erupted into frenzy on Wednesday when Highlanders Football Club, otherwise known as Bosso, limped to victory against a lethargic Lowveld-based Triangle Football Club.

It was a drama-filled fixture as expected as the Castle Lager Premier Soccer League (PSL) championship title race — which looks set to go to the wire — enters its final stages with two matches remaining.

There were a number of controversial decisions by referee Bekezela Makeka, which were compounded by the theatrics of Triangle players who seemed content with a draw as news filtered from Harare that other title contenders Dynamos Football Club (DeMbare) and Harare City Football Club (Sunshine City Boys) had drawn their respective matches.

Makeka has come under fire from Bosso critics over some of his decisions, but neutrals are adamant he made the right calls, particularly flashing out eight yellow cards and three red cards against indisciplined Triangle players for dissent, feigning injuries and other unnecessary delaying tactics.

The man in the middle of the pitch added at least 16 minutes additional time for the stoppages, sparking anger from Triangle players and the technical staff.

As fate would have it, Highlanders eventually scored the elusive goal at the death with Triangle three men short, nonetheless igniting wild celebrations from Bosso fans.

While the performance of the referee is debatable, it is not debatable that Bosso has not been convincing enough in their recent performances. Their play was lousy, lacked skill and dynamism.

The executive, coaches, players and their fanatical supporters might have set their eyes on a cup double after shrugging off stubborn middle-placed Triangle, but the truth should be told, Wednesday’s performance ranks as one of their worst at BF.

Bosso players were pedestrian, giving credence to assertions by armchair football critics that the team are pretenders to the PSL throne.

Highlanders will not go anyway with the calibre of players they have unless they change their attitude towards the game.

The strike-force, despite showing a few flashes of brilliance, particularly from Masimba Mambare, Gabriel Nyoni and Heritein Masuku, was blunt.

Despite appearing in celebratory mood after the victory against Triangle, genuine Bosso supporters feel shortchanged.

The team should up its game.