By Tawanda Tafirenyika
HARARE CITY… (1) 1
“#Zimbabwe” JERRY Chipangura scored the only goal that counted to give Lloyd Chitembwe a winning start as new Harare City coach after edging Bulawayo giants Highlanders in a Castle Lager Premiership tie at Barbourfields Stadium on Sunday.
Ironically, Chitembwe installed Harare City coach this week was still in charge of Caps United when he overcame Highlanders 2-1 in Harare before immediately announcing his resignation.
He then resurfaced at struggling Harare City, with his mandate to save the team from relegation with his first match in charge -a tough trip to Highlanders.
Chitembwe however managed a hard fought victory against one of the biggest teams in the country- a result which has endeared himself with the supporters.
The victory for the Sunshine Boys ended an eight match winless streak of five defeats and three draws, a run of results that had sets alarm bells off at the well-resourced club.
The result saw City moving out of the relegation zone, to 14th on the log standings with 22 points, two above Mushowani Stars who occupies the relegation cut-off point.
Crucially the win by Chitembwe’s new side also completed a league double over Highlanders, whom they beat 3-1 in the reverse fixture at Rufaro Stadium in April.
William Manondo was the architecht of the goal when he made his way past Highlanders defender Tendai Ndlovu on the right flank and sent in a cross which Chipangura easily tapped in past goalkeeper Ariel Sibanda in the 21st minute.
Chitembwe said the win could be the start of good things at Harare City.
“It was a good game of football and the boys were very efficient in the way they expressed themselves technically. It’s quite amazing and I am very impressed. It’s a team that does not deserve where it is. I am extremely delighted with the result. This is an absolutely perfect club which is ambitious and I can’t wait to be part of them for a very long time,” Chitembwe said.
For Highlanders, the defeat, which was their second on the trot, was a hard pill to swallow for them.
The home side missed several chances in the game, a source of worry for coach Mandla Mpofu who admitted they played a team which was hungrier than them.
“If you don’t take your chances you are bound to be punished. We played a team that wanted it more than us and were desperate for points. It’s disappointing that we made one mistake and we conceded. We created a number of chances but could not convert which is very worrying. Lack of composure and confidence in front of goal is costing us. I am not happy with the way we missed but I am not demoralised, not panicking. We will rise as a team,” Mpofu said. Highlanders are two rungs above City on position 12 with 23 points.
Highlanders: A Sibanda, M Phiri, M Ndlovu, T Ndlovu, P Muduhwa, N Masuku, R Lunga (G Makaruse 85′), B Banda (P Nyirenda 69′), P Dube, D Mhindirira, B Sibanda (T Makanda 69′)
Harare City: M Nyamupangedengu, M Machazane, W Manondo (W Mukanga 86′), M Diro Nyenye, H Chipusha, M Muchenje, T Chimwemwe, T Tavengwa, J Chipangura (G Madhake 75′), M Vengesai, I Wadi (T Tumba 69′)