By Innocent Kurira
Highlanders’ coach Hendrick Pieter de Jongh continued to foster his deep romance with the Bosso faithful after leading the Bulawayo giants to their first Chibuku Super Cup final since the competition was re-introduced in 2014.
Bosso edged a stubborn ZPC Kariba 1-0 at Barbourfields Stadium on Sunday to book a place in the final, whose date and venue are yet to be decided.
Bosso will face Ngezi Platinum Stars in the final after the Mhondoro-based outfit edged Harare City 7-6 on penalties on Saturday.
Prince Dube’s solitary strike was enough to hand Bosso victory, placing them just a win away from lifting their first major silverware in six years.
The last major silverware Bosso won was the Mbada Diamonds Cup in 2013.
Sunday’s victory was not one of their best performances under the Dutch coach, but it was a day the fans carried the day for Bosso.
The fans created a hostile atmosphere that ZPC Kariba, who were the home side, failed to cope with.
Even the Dutchman heaped praises on the fans after the game and acknowledged that they had played a big part in the victory.
“Highlanders have the best fans in the country, no discussion there, not Dynamos, but Highlanders have the greatest fans in the land. Highlanders fans are very passionate and l like that. As l had said during the week that if the fans come in their numbers, they will give the advantage. The fans were great today. I hope more fans come to the stadium because they are our 12th man. This is a very nice football team, we deserve to be in the final,” said De Jongh.
There were wild celebrations at Barbourfields and on the streets of Bulawayo as the Bosso faithful finally found a reason to cheer after a very long and painful season. It was a victory that left their multitudes of fans buzzing with excitement at the prospect of a return to the glory days of yesteryear.
Bosso fans have had a love-hate relationship with their side, but De Jongh has somehow stabilised things and all of a sudden all looks rosy.
The fans have fallen in love with De Jongh for instilling a winning mentality in the players. The multitudes that thronged Barbourfields for Sunday’s semi-final clash were evidence that the Dutchman has created a renewed spark of interest in the team.
Attendances had been dwindling due to Bosso’s poor start to the season, but the fans have found their way back since De Jongh took charge, as he is yet to drop points at Barbourfields in the league and has also won all his cup games.
Even rains that fell on Bulawayo for the first time this year, couldn’t prevent the fans from watching their favourite team.
Bosso beat Mhangura 3-0 in the final of the inaugural Chibuku Cup in 1973 to win the club’s first biggest competition. They went on to win the cup in 1980, 1984, 1985 and 1986. The Chronicle