By Robson Sharuko
HARARE- Hot shot striker Takesure Chinyama, who has exploded on his return to the domestic Premiership, has started the season playing at a very high level good enough to earn him a quick return to Europe.
The Zimbabwe international forward, who turns 30 on September 30 this year, has turned himself into the dominant figure, just three weeks into the new season, with a stunning strike rate that has caught the imagination of the nation. Chinyama has scored six goals, in three competitive games, for his new club Dynamos with five of the goals coming in his last two matches in the Champions League and the Castle Lager Premiership.
An old-fashioned striker, with the imposing figure of a bull, Chinyama has fitted in effortlessly into the Dynamos system and provided the club with an experienced hand to trust, in their line of attack, to fill the hole left by Cuthbert Malajila. Reports have suggested that Chinyama, who spent two weeks at former South African champions SuperSport United during the off-season, is set to join the Pretoria side during the Super Diski off-season in June.
There has been no confirmation from either SuperSport United or Chinyama to support those reports but it’s certain that the striker’s explosive start to life at Dynamos will catch the eye of many suitors in South Africa. Kaizer Chiefs, who have in the past invested heavily in Zimbabwean players, must be watching closely as they have been struggling to find a reliable goal-scorer to fill the big shoes left by Knowledge Musona who left for Germany last year.
Their big Soweto rivals, Orlando Pirates, recruited South African international forward, Benni McCarthy, at the beginning of this season but while the Uefa Champions League winner has made an impact, he hasn’t provided the glut of goals that the Buccaneers hoped for. Mamelodi Sundowns are well served by Nyasha Mushekwi and Khatlego Mphela but, if they fail to win the league this season, they could look elsewhere for goals and Chinyama could come into the picture.
But veteran Zimbabwean football commentator and broadcaster, Charles Mabika, believes Chinyama is playing at a level good enough to earn himself a quick return to Europe. Mabika, who has watched two of the games that Chinyama has played this season for Dynamos, said the challenge for the big forward would be to maintain playing at such a high level.
“Takesure has started the season with a bang and playing at a level that is way, way higher than the local Premiership standards,” said the ZBC sports anchor. “To me, the level that I have seen him play in the games against Motor Action and Hardbody, is not even for the South African Premiership because that would be a waste of his talents.
“Takesure is playing at a level that you see from strikers playing in Europe and I have to say it clearly that I have been impressed so much by what I have seen in those two games. Of course, one could say it’s still early days and football is a funny old game and things can change quickly and a player loses form and goes on a dry spell but, as they say, form is temporary mate and class is permanent and what I have seen in those two games is sheer class.
“Takesure makes sure the defenders feel his presence and he uses his strength well and you can tell, with his decision making, that is playing at a different wave length and that is why he has been successful so far and, by the way, it’s not an easy thing to come and make a big impact leading the line at DeMbare.”
Mabika said twice, once in the game against Motor Action and once in the game against Hardbody, Chinyama caught his eye with his instincts for goal. “Such instinct in a striker just comes naturally and it also shows the level of confidence that the striker has in himself,” said Mabika.
“I was telling my friends that I see it all the time when I watch Cristiano Ronaldo, he just picks the ball and it doesn’t matter where he is, in terms of distance from goal, because if his instincts tell him to shoot, he just does that and boom, it’s a goal. In the two games that I have watched Chinyama play, I can say it’s the closest thing that I have seen a striker, playing in the local league in recent years, showing the same predatory instincts that you see in the strikers that play in Europe.
“To be successful as a striker one needs to be aggressive and Takesure is very aggressive; one needs to have an eye for goal and he has that quality; one needs to be confident that he can score and that is what we are seeing in this guy and, crucially, you need to score regularly. After the Motor Action game, I went home and said maybe that was a fluke but he went to Mozambique and scored twice, which means it wasn’t a fluke, and came back home and scored a hattrick. And he also did very well in Europe and was top goalscorer in a tough league like the Polish Premiership.
“I hope Takesure stays fit and I also hope that he stays longer in the local league because players like him have this magical ability to brings the fans back to the stadiums but I have to say that it’s unlikely he will stay longer because his quality is for Europe.”
Mabika said the Dynamos leadership and technical team have been vindicated for taking the gamble to accept Chinyama into their squad despite concerns that he had a bad knee injury. “There were some concerns obviously and we heard them with some Dynamos fans asking why we were leaving the club’s leaders and coaches to take such a gamble,” said Mabika.
“Those fans were so sure that Takesure was finished and Dynamos were making a very big mistake. But he has let his football do the talking and those voices have been silenced because Takesure is now a hero at Dynamos. That is the beauty of football but you have to give credit to the club’s leaders and coach Callisto Pasuwa for saying ‘yes’ to their marriage with Takesure.”
Chinyama played for Hwange and Monomotapa on the domestic Premiership before linking up with Wieslaw Grabowski who arranged for him to try his luck in Poland. He arrived at Legia Warsaw in 2006 for trials but the Polish giants felt he wasn’t good enough and decided against buying him.
Chinyama moved to Dyskobolia Grodzisk Wielkopolski and after three goals in 11 league appearances and three goals in six cup games for the club in the Ekstraklasa, Legia came knocking on the door. The rest, as they say, is history and Chinyama became the first non-European joint top-scorer in the Ekstraklasa in the 2008/2009 season.
After four seasons at Legia, the forward felt he needed a change of environment and pushed for a move leading to serious differences with his employers.
Takesure Chinyama’s Record In Poland
2006/2007 – Grodzisk – 11 league appearances, THREE goals; Six Cup appearances, THREE GOALS
2007/2008 – Legia Warsaw – 28 league appearances, FIFTEEN goals; 10 Cup appearances, THREE goals
2008/2009 – Legia Warsaw – 26 league appearances, NINETEEN goals; Six Cup appearances, TWO goals; Three Euro appearances, ZERO goals
2009/2010 – Legia Warsaw – 7 league appearances, TWO GOALS.
Record at Legia Warsaw – 61 league appearances; THIRTY SIX goals; 16 Cup appearances, FIVE goals
Overall Record in Poland – 72 league appearances, THIRTY NINE goals; 22 Cup appearances, EIGHT goals