Eddie Chikamhi Sports Reporter
NIMBLE-footed winger Nicholas Alifandika could bounce back from the wilderness this season as he looks to retrace his footsteps back to CAPS United.
Alifandika, who had a short but happy stint with the Green Machine in 2014 before moving to Harare City at the beginning of the 2015 season together with Honey Chimutimunzeve, is expected to join the Green Machine when they start their pre-season training this morning.
The former Dynamos and Black Mambas midfielder spent the last part of the previous season away from the Premiership spotlight after he was shipped out by the Sunshine Boys in July.
There are prospects he could make his return to Makepekepe but first he has to impress coach Lloyd Chitembwe.
The Green Machine team manager Shakespeare Chinogwenya yesterday confirmed Alifandika had communicated with them and also indicated the club could give him a second chance if he impresses the technical team.
“He has been in touch and the coach has agreed to give him a chance to prove himself. So we expect him to join the rest of the squad when we begin our pre-season training. But at the moment there isn’t much on him,” said Chinogwenya.
Makepekepe are looking to strengthen their side ahead of the new season and have since agreed deals with such players as former ZPC Kariba defender Dennis Dauda, ex-Kiglon and Triangle midfielder Cabby Kamhapa, their former goalkeeper Edmore Sibanda and Ronald Pfumbidzai who returned home prematurely after a short stint in Denmark.
They have also renewed the contract of resurgent midfielder Joel Ngodzo following the expiry of his season’s deal in December.
The former Zimbabwe youth international is currently with the national team at the Africa Nations Championship in Rwanda.
Ngodzo added two years to his stay at Makepekepe after charming both his club’s bosses and the local league in the last half of 2015 with top performances that also earned him a place in the CHAN squad.
Makepekepe are also looking to register their former captain Method Mwanjali who could not play last season because they had filled all their slots.
CAPS United warmed up to their pre-season yesterday when they held a get-together programme for their players and officials in the outskirts of Harare where new arrivals were introduced.
Chinogwenya said the exercise was important for bonding.
“All the players have been invited and we also have the technical staff from our feeder club Gunners led by Darlington Dodo. This is just to show the bond between the two clubs.
“Obviously Dodo will be exchanging notes with our coaches because of the new arrangement. Remember we will have some players who will be playing at Gunners this season while we will also look at some of the players who are at the club with hope of incorporating them in our ranks,” said Chinogwenya.
Makepekepe have parted ways with youthful midfielder Takudzwa Mahori who has since been given his clearance and Dominic Mukandi who will be crossing the great divide to rivals Dynamos.
Chinogwenya, however, expressed reservations about Mukandi’s move to Dynamos since they have been negotiating with him for contract renewal.
“If he has decided to join Dynamos it’s still fine but we have been talking to him and he had accepted part payment as advance, which he needed urgently.
“However, we had not entered into a contract agreement with him. I am sure we will have some other players who play his position,” said Chinogwenya.
CAPS United finished fifth last year following a late surge under Chitembwe. They are looking to better their performances this year by ending an 11-year championship wait.