By Paul Mundandi
Highlanders coach Elroy Akbay believes the ZNA Charities Shield final at Barbourfields this afternoon is a battle between the two best football clubs in the country right now.
The Dutchman believes his men are in good shape to defend their silverware and has promised fans an explosive match.
“I do not believe in best players, but I believe in a good team which is prepared to work as a unit. FC Platinum have the best players, but we beat them,” said Akbay.
“Highlanders and CAPS United have the best teams who want to work and produce results. That is why I am expecting an explosive match between the two sides.”
The Green Machine are on cloud nine after beating continental heavyweights TP Mazembe of the DRC last Sunday to secure a place in the group stages of the CAF Champions League.
Lloyd Chitembwe’s men are in high spirits despite the fact they will be missing defender Dennis Dauda, Ronald ‘Rooney’Chitiyo and goalkeeper Edmore ‘Zikeeper’ Sibanda, who are with the senior national team for tomorrow’s international friendly against Zambia at the National Sports Stadium.
Highlanders will be without Peter Muduwa, Prince Dube and goalkeeper Ariel Sibanda, who are also on national duty.
“We are going to Bulawayo to do our job tomorrow (today). If ever we are given the opportunity to play at home or away we will play. We try to be competitive all the time, we want to be consistent and that is our objective,” said coach Lloyd Chitembwe.
“The match is very important to us because it will be part of our preparation for the league.
“The ZNA final is not about winning the cup because we won the PSL League championship last season and we are currently the holders of the league title.
“It is about us playing and doing so well and we are not disturbed by the absence of our two key players.
“The system at CAPS United is more important than individuals. We did not have Ronald Pfumbidzai last week when we played TP Mazembe but we still qualified.
“Even when we went to DRC, Pfumbidzai was not in the team but we still got a result. CAPS United is always prepared to play and I will always maintain that the system is more important than individuals.”
CAPS will have to find a way to stop their former son Rodreck Mutuma, who has turned himself into a darling of the Bosso fans. The Herald