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Denver resurfaces, not guaranteed derby place

By Tadious Manyepo

Dynamos midfielder Denver Mukamba has resurfaced at the Glamour Boys, almost a week after he went AWOL but coach Lloyd Chigowe was yesterday not immediately guaranteeing that his truant star would feature in the famous Premiership derby against CAPS United at Rufaro on Sunday.

Denver Mukamba watching Dynamos play at Rufaro Stadium in this file picture
Denver Mukamba watching Dynamos play at Rufaro Stadium in this file picture

Mukamba failed to report for camp ahead of Dynamos’ Chibuku Super Cup quarter-final clash against Herentals at the same venue last weekend.

After spending six days without communicating any word to the club management nor the technical crew, Mukamba, as he has often done emerged at training and joined the rest of the DeMbare squad at yesterday’s session.

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Mukamba is understood to have earlier told the Dynamos executive that he had been attending a family bereavement, paving the way for his return to training.

The talent but ill-disciplined midfielder rejoined DeMbare during the mid-season transfer period from a cut-short loan spell at rivals CAPS United but not before he turned on the power, providing the solitary strike which downed his parent club in the first instalment of this year’s Harare derby at the National Sports Stadium.

Having played that decisive role in the tense fixture, Mukamba has always been touted as the man to watch in the second leg of what promises to be a highly-charged tie.

But his deviant behaviour, which has seen him making all the negative headlines this season, could rule him out of Sunday’s encounter after Chigowe hinted the lanky midfielder might not be fully prepared for the showdown which is key to Dynamos’ fight against relegation.

“We had discussions with the executive and they said they are going to look into the matter and come out with a resolution on the way forward. It would be tricky for us to field someone who trained for only two days when the other players have trained for four days. I think it would be demoralising to the other committed squad members if we take that stance (to include Denver in match day squad).

“Everybody must train as a professional. We are professionals and we should learn to respect the values and principles of our job. I think if he works hard and become professional like everyone else, we will always consider him for selection,” said Chigowe.

“He has, in the meantime, been granted the permission to train with the rest of the team.

“He said he had gone to a funeral when we asked where he had been for the past days.

“At this particular moment we have to manage a lot of positives, so I won’t say much about Denver Mukamba,” Chigowe said.

Dynamos are lying deep in the drop zone and are currently enduring a bumpy stretch in the league marathon after collecting just two points out of a possible 15 in their last five matches and Chigowe knows Mukamba, who normally rises to the occasion in high-pressure games might come in handy on Sunday.

But the coach refused to guarantee the former Bidvest man’s place in the team.

While Mukamba appears to have set his sights on returning for the derby, former captain Ocean Mushure is still AWOL with whispers from the deep suggesting that DeMbare’s Most Loyal Player award winner for 2017 has started angling for a move away from the struggling giants.

Chigowe said he would have wanted Mushure to be part of the team to play Makepekepe given his experience but is happy working with those players who are committed to the Dynamos cause.

“Ocean is a sober man who I think is deliberately making uninformed decisions. Probably he wants a move but I think he is doing it the wrong way.”

“I am impressed by the guys who are prepared to do the job for Dynamos like those who did the work last Sunday in the quarter-finals of the Chibuku Super Cup against Herentals.

“Both Mushure (Ocean) and Mukamba (Denver) were not in that game against Herentals, so we cannot talk of guys who are not prepared to put on the shift, I would rather concentrate on those who are playing for the team.

“Some of them are going through pain barrier to represent Dynamos, those are the guys who we are prepared to honour and give respect and I think they can do the job for us,” Chigowe said.

He said he is spending a lot of time trying to prepare the players mentally as the team faces a decisive six games to preserve their Premiership status.

“In as far as I am concerned, no match is going to be easy for us but CAPS United are our traditional rivals, we respect them but we are out to get a result.

“The boys have worked very hard this week. We have loaded them a lot ahead of the match against CAPS United.

“Naturally we know the boys now have belief that they are winners and we are also working on their mental strength to ready for Sunday’s game and the remaining fixtures,” Chigowe said.  The Herald