WITH the Highlanders elections set for February 1 and the club announcing its assistant coaches today, a senior club official says clamouring for the league championship has wreaked havoc at Bosso in the last few years.
The life member and club official who chose to remain anonymous said the demand for winning the championship had put coaches and executive committees under unnecessary pressure when economically it only made sense in the league to win trophies while building a team for the future and the league title.
“It’s very unfortunate that we are going to elections and every chairman who comes in wants to win the championship,” he said.
“They think it’s the measure to have done well at Highlanders. But there is more to it than winning the league. We put ourselves and the coaches under unnecessary pressure.
“I have full trust in the new coach (Bongani Mafu) and the assistants that will be unveiled soon, but focus should be on building the team for the future and not for the incoming coach to straight away win the championship.
“If you look at it the league championship is only $100 000 and it takes the whole season to prepare for and you go into camp 30 times. But if you are to win two or three trophies, you already surpass that.”
The source added: “And how much do you put into preparing for these cup tournaments as compared to the league? Winning it (the championship) will be a bonus. Maybe we should just beat Dynamos home and away in the league and people will be happy.”
Last year, Bosso came position five in the league and lost to Dynamos 0-2 in the Bob 90 Super Cup with DeMbare pocketing $45 000 in March. Bosso got $25 000.
They were knocked out of the One Wallet Cup by How Mine in the quarter-finals in Gweru 3-4 in a penalty shoot-out after a 1-1 stalemate in regulation time in July.
Triangle beat Dynamos 4-3 in a penalty lottery in the final of that tournament in July at the National Sports Stadium and walked away with $80 000.
The Bulawayo giants went on to lose 0-3 to Harare City in the semi-final of the Chibuku Super Cup at Rufaro Stadium in October.
FC Platinum picked up that piece of silverware and $75 000 when they beat Harare City 3-1 in a penalty shoot-out at Mandava Stadium in November.
In September, Bosso lost 1-4 to Dynamos in the Pick n Pay Challenge Cup in Harare with the Glamour Boys taking home $60 000 and Bosso $50 000.
In November, Dynamos once again got the better of Highlanders beating them 4-3 in a penalty shoot-out in the Gushungo Victory Cup to claim the $45 000 prize money with Bosso taking $35 000.
Highlanders are out of this year’s season opener, the Mbada Diamonds Cup, after failing to make it to the top four last year.
Dynamos, ZPC Kariba, Caps United and FC Platinum will take part in the tournament whose budget has been reduced to $250 000.
The club member said he believed Mafu should concentrate on building a new team from Highlanders juniors, who have the club at heart and inculcate a sense of belonging and culture of the club as that has been the call from all sections of the Bosso family.
“It’s not making any economic sense at all aiming for the league this season, but fighting for the trophies,” the life member added.
“I believe Mafu and the incoming assistants can do that. Mafu has the background of a teacher and is tough and Super (Netsai Moyo), incoming welfare manager is well cultured in the club and is a schooled somebody whom I think will be able to handle the boys.”
Mandla Mpofu is set to be unveiled as the assistant with Peter Nkomo retaining the goalkeepers’ coach post.
The run-up to the elections had been on a lull with indications Peter Dube will not get a strong challenge for the chairmanship while Emmett Ndlovu and Donald Ndebele confirmed contesting the secretary position.
Ndlovu, a former team manager and medic, is favourite to finally land the post he has coveted in the last few elections while Dube, who is also the Premier Soccer League vice-chairman, is set for a second term in office.
Incumbent secretary Andrew Tapela is not eligible as he has held the post twice the Bosso constitution will not allow him a thrid term. The committee member position held by Charles “Six-One” Moyo, is also up for grabs. Moyo is seeking re-election.