By Tadious Manyepo
CAPS United coach Darlington Dodo believes his charges have a strong mentality to come out triumphant in the run-in to the championship. The Green Machine’s character has come under scrutiny after they blew a golden opportunity to stretch their lead at the summit of the Castle Lager Premiership standings on Sunday.
Makepekepe would have opened a five-point gap at the top had they managed to beat relegation candidates TelOne at Ascot.
Bulawayo Chiefs had done them a favour after beating second-placed FC Platinum a day earlier. But it was the Gweru club who posted a 2-0 win over a side who are seeking their second league crown in four years.
Dodo’s troops have failed to win in three matches and he is blaming some casual approach from some of his players.
“We are working on correcting the mental side of the boys. I think we are mentally very strong to sustain the run-in but we need to correct some mistakes which we have made in the past three games,” said Dodo.
“If one looks at it very closely, you will realise that it’s all about the mental side of it.
“We have been losing concentration in crucial areas at the wrong moments.
“We haven’t been really compact. We can do better than we have done. Of course, TelOne are a difficult team to beat but we are leading the standings and we have to prove that we are not at the summit by mistake.”
Dodo said his steam needed to retain maximum concentration to stand a chance to win the title.
“We are headed for the crucial phase of the marathon. We have some big and tough fixtures,’’ he said.
“It is the most difficult stretch of the road, bumpy and awkward.
“It is the time that mental strength comes into full play. We, obviously, can’t be learning a lot more things when the season is at this stage.
“We are always working hard to try and perfect several aspects of the game. But, at the moment, we should be concentrating more on the mental side of things.”
The Green Machine have amassed 51 points, two above second-placed FC Platinum with five games still to be played before the curtain comes down on the season.
Chicken Inn and ZPC Kariba are still within touching distance of Dodo’s side but the former Gunners gaffer says he will be concentrating on winning his games than looking at how other teams will be performing.
CAPS United next face ZPC Kariba at home before making the short cross-town trip to play unpredictable Yadah.
They will then host perennial foes Dynamos before travelling to Mhondoro for a date against Ngezi Platinum.
The Green Machine conclude the season with a humdinger against FC Platinum at home.
Top 3 last five games
CAPS United: ZPC Kariba (H), Yadah (A), Dynamos (H), Ngezi (A), FC Platinum (H)
FC Platinum: Manica Diamonds (A), Highlanders (H), Chapungu (A), Black Rhinos (H), CAPS United (A)
Chicken Inn: Mushowani (A), Hwange (H), Bulawayo Chiefs (A), Herentals (A), TelOne (H), Triangle (outstanding fixture H). The Herald