By Tadious Manyepo
Dynamos and Caps United have spent over $5 million between themselves in a recruitment exercise, and signing-on fees, so far this off-season.
The two Harare giants have brought in players enmasse as they battle to end three years of dominance by FC Platinum.
The Green Machine came close to winning the league title last season, only to falter in the final lap when they lost their last two games against Ngezi Platinum and FC Platinum.
This riled the team’s management who apportioned part of the blame to some senior players for leading a mutiny ahead of their final two matches.
It was no surprise when Makepekepe off-loaded 11 of those players, including former captain Hardlife Zvirekwi.
They have now signed 18 new players.
Dynamos have failed to compete on the domestic front in recent years and have looked a very ordinary side in the past two seasons.
The Glamour Boys finished ninth in the league last season, with the team only saved from the jaws of relegation by Tonderai Ndiraya who replaced the clueless Lloyd “MaBlanyo’’ Chigowe, midway through the campaign.
DeMbare have also cleared their pastures with more than 10 players, including the experienced duo of Archford Gutu and Simba, being considered excess baggage.
They have been signing, at least a player, after every three days for the past three weeks and they now have 13 new signings on their arrivals’ roster so far.
The two giants have had to part with a significant chunk of money for the acquisitions.
Although Caps United vice-president, Nhamo Tutisani, could not be drawn into divulging the exact figures they have committed in their recruitment drive, it is understood to be in the region of $2.7 million.
Some players are said to be still waiting for their signing-on fees, which could increase their financial outlay.
“I cannot really divulge the figures but I am sure we are a club committed to what we do,’’ said Tutisani.
“We have sacrificed quite a significant amount in bringing all these players to Caps United.
“We are taking the business approach, starting this season, so have had to put aside a budget to pour into the business.
“We are in the process of paying all the signing-on fees to our new players. We are also aiming to sign more players this period.
“We are developing a model which will start giving us profit in a few years’ time.”
Tutisani said his club was still considering whether to have a developmental team in Division 2 or incorporate them into their reserve side.
Dynamos chairman, Isaah Mupfurutsa, said his club have spent a fortune in taking home top-ranked players.
“We cannot disclose the amount which we have spent so far. We are winding up our signings and we will be guided by our coach (Ndiraya) on who to pursue,’’ said Mupfurutsa.
“But, I think, we will have only two additions to the team which we already have.
“I can tell you that we are one of the best paying teams on the land and we have spent a lot of money this transfer period.
“By end of this month, we should be done with the signings and we should have paid up signing-on fees to all the players we have at the moment, including the newboys those we have retained.”
Mupfurutsa confirmed that defender Emmanuel Jalai was staying put at the Glamour Boys, putting paid to reports the 21-year-old was on his way out.
He said Jalai has since signed a new and improved contract.
Jalai was one of the outstanding players at the Glamour Boys last season despite their miserable run. The Chronicle