HIGHLANDERS coach Kelvin Kaindu felt the heat over the weekend after losing his third consecutive match — this time to FC Platinum in the quarter-finals of the BancABC Sup8r competition.
A clash against Caps United looms over this weekend in Bulawayo amid concerns over Bosso’s slump in form.
Caps were the first team to hand Bosso an away defeat two weeks ago and the two giants clash at Barbourfields this Sunday, as the second round of the Castle Lager Premier Soccer League resumes. First, it was a derby loss — a morale-sapping 1-0 defeat to Chicken Inn — having previously also lost at home to How Mine and Motor Action.
The league race resumes this weekend with Highlanders still on top of the standings with 29 points — the same as Chicken Inn — but they face a resurgent Caps United just three points behind the leaders.
Dynamos are in third place with 28 points and meet How Mine at Luveve on Saturday while fourth-placed Harare City — also on 28 — will be back home against Hwange.
With such statistics and pressure hanging over him, Kaindu yesterday told Southern Eye Sport more still needed to be done.
“We have not been consistent this season. We are in a better position on the log table. It is just that people are judging us in comparison to where we were this time last season. The players have put in 100% effort in our matches.
“If you look at the log table, you would notice that we have scored more goals. Our only weakness is that we have conceded a lot. We still need to work more on our defence and scoring. We are just going through a bad patch. We will start moving in the right direction,” he said.
There has been an outcry over the performance of Highlanders, as they were expected to continue from where they left off last season. Last season, Bosso went on a 23-match unbeaten run, but eventually lost the championship to Dynamos on goal difference.
“There is always pressure in football. The more you win the more pressure you will have and if you lose, it is the same thing. The important thing is to know how to handle the pressure,” he said.
There have also been posts on social networks saying Bosso are losing matches because some of the players come to training drunk.
“I am a Christian and the players know that. I will never tolerate any player who comes to training drunk. I am so particular about discipline. But we do not monitor what the players do outside when they are not at training,” Kaindu said.
The mid-season transfer window period opened yesterday, but the Zambian said he was not sure if they would beef up their squad.
“For us, it is difficult because we cannot go on the market. If we don’t have resources, then my job is to improve the players I have,” he said.
Kaindu said the second round of the league was going to be even more difficult because of the battle for the championship and the related relegation fight. At the same stage last season, Bosso had gone half-way through their campaign without a loss.
While Kaindu, feels the heat, Dynamos are on recovery path after reaching the semi-finals of the BancABC Sup8r dispatching Buffaloes 2-0 in a revenge match at Gibbo on Sunday.
Buffaloes face the champions again next Sunday at Rufaro Stadium. They were the first team to hand Dynamos their first league defeat of the season, winning 3-2 at Sakubva Stadium.
FC Platinum welcomed Lloyd Mutasa to the helm with a win over Bosso. They are unbeaten in their last three matches, having picked up four points from two league matches to move to 26 points — three behind Highlanders.
Friday: Chicken Inn v Shabanie Mine (Luveve)
Saturday: How Mine v Dynamos (Luveve), Motor Action v Monomotapa (Motor Action Sports Club), Black Rhinos v FC Platinum (Rimuka), Black Mambas v Triangle (Morris Depot)
Sunday: Highlanders v Caps United (Barbourfields), Buffaloes v Tripple B (Sakubva), Harare City v Hwange (Rufaro)