HomeSportFootballDeMbare players boycott training again

DeMbare players boycott training again

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A DEJECTED Kalisto Pasuwa yesterday lay slumped on the passenger seat of a Toyota Ipsum with the only other company being his assistant coach Philemon Mutyakureva and a groundsman who nibbled through a boiled maize cob.

HENRY MHARA/JOHN MOKWETSI

The bumpy Zimphos Stadium looked desolate like a ghost mine town and only 14 soccer balls and a few cones signalled that there were supposed to be players training ahead of a crucial Caf Champions League second leg match in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) against a formidable AS Vita.

Pasuwa’s phone kept ringing as minutes passed and faded his hope of seeing his troops arrive for their 9am training session.

It was a two-hour wait that eventually ended with “the players had told me that they were coming, but I don’t think so. How do you plan under such circumstances?” Pasuwa sighed and asked rhetorically.

About 10m away from the silver Ipsum, on a crackly wooden bench, two Angolan players from the Aces Youth Academy listened to Angolan music on an Ipad.

They had come to try their luck at Dynamos and seemingly oblivious of the malfunctioning machine they hope to join.

While Pasuwa was waiting, the players had assembled at East24 restaurant, where a decision not to go for training unless they received their bonuses was reached.

The players are owed bonuses and allowances from the Caf Champions League matches against Mochudi Centre Chiefs (home and away) and AS Vita at home last Saturday. The bill has ballooned to $14 000.

A source also revealed that the club also owes the players allowances from the Mbada Diamonds Cup matches played last season.

Dynamos secretary-general Webster Chikengezha addressed the players yesterday, but could not break the impasse.

“The truth of the matter is we don’t have money at the moment,” Chikengezha said.

“The amount owed to the players in allowances is about $14 000, but we also have to prepare for the trip to Kinshasa. We need $30 000 for the tickets alone and if you factor in other expenses like allowances for the players for that match then we are looking at something like $40 000.

“We don’t have that kind of money at present. We have offered to pay them for the first match against Mochudi. We have $5 300 at the moment, but the players have refused, they want the money in full,” Chikengezha said.

The players who reportedly made it clear to Chikengezha that they would not budge, soon dispersed to their different destinations after the address.

At East24 around midday, there was only team manager Richard Chihoro, goalkeepers coach Tichaona Diya, physiotherapist Knowledge Zambo and captain Murape Murape milling around. They immediately drove away when they realised that they had company from the Press.

Chihoro shouted: “We are going to the training ground. Did you not see the bus with the players?” the manager said before driving towards the city centre — an opposite direction to Zimphos.

Players then confirmed that they had for the second day refused to train demanding what is due to them.

“They promised to give us money for one match and then the remainder when we return. But this is Dynamos and we know how they operate. We will not get anything when we return,” a player said.

Another player said: “We have not been paid for the Mbada Diamond Cup matches from last season. How do we know that they will give us that money when we return? We will not travel to DRC if we do not get that money; it’s as simple as that.”

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