Eddie Chikamhi Sports Reporter
Former Harare City skipper David Kutyauripo feels he still had a season or two of playing top-flight football but the defender does not regret the decision to hang up his boots and pursue a coaching role in the Sunshine Boys structures. The ex-Dynamos and CAPS United man has officially announced his retirement and will miss what could probably have been his last dance with African football when Harare City line up for their maiden Confederation Cup participation this year.
At 36, Kutyauripo felt he needed to call time on a professional career that spanned 16 years and took him to the shores of Cyprus during his peak. Kutyauripo had tried his best to try and defy age and leave his coach Taurayi Mangwiro believing that no player at Harare City could match his endurance in training and his dedication to work.
However, recurring injuries and the apparent slowing down in pace eventually had the final say forcing the former Warriors international to call time on his playing career.
“It was hard to make that decision (retirement) especially coming from a previous season (2014) when I was one of the Soccer Stars of the Year. From that time I was already thinking of retirement but my colleagues were pushing me to carry on.
“Then when I got injured last season I asked myself if it was worth it for me to keep on playing. I answered myself again and said I think it’s time up. So I approached my coach Taurayi Mangwiro about it.
“He is someone I was sharing everything of mine with and he said he supported my decision. It was my decision and I want to thank God who gave me the talent. I wasn’t pushed or told what to do by anyone. “I don’t have regrets in my career because I fulfilled everything. I have won almost all cups in Zimbabwean football.
“I want to thank every coach who was involved in my career until the last day of my career. I also want to thank my friends and the football fans for supporting me and I hope they will continue supporting me in this journey that I have started.
“I am more than ready for my new role because I would want to share with the upcoming youngsters what I learnt and gained in my career. It’s a challenge and I’m one person who likes challenges,” said Kutyauripo. The steely defender has since enrolled for a Level One coaching certificate to brace for new challenges in the world of coaching.
Although he is now working with the juniors, his heart is still with the first team which embarks on their debut season in Africa with a preliminary round home tie against AS Adema of Madagascar. Kutyauripo has played both Champions League and Confederation Cup football with Dynamos and believes City have a formidable side following the additions of Raphael Manuvire, Ronald Chitiyo, Edwin Madhananga, Blessing Moyo and ex-Monomotapa and Triangle defender Jimmy Tigere, who came in as his direct replacement.
“This is our first time to play in Africa as Harare City. Anything can happen in football. What I want is to see them progressing to another stage. “The new additions are all okay. They will bring a new dimension to the team. Come February, Harare City will be a marvel to watch,” said Kutyauripo. If they make it past the Malagasy side, they have a more daunting task against former Zambian champions Zanaco in the first round.
“When you are playing in Africa you must use home advantage and be prepared mentally when you are playing away because language barriers play a big part sometimes and the reception you get in some countries may be hostile. So they should be prepared for everything,” he said.
Harare City squad
Tafadzwa Dube, Maxwell Nyamupangedengu, Tatenda Munditi, Honey Chimutimunzeve, Takudzwa Gilroy Chimwemwe, Jerry Chipangura, Ronald Chitiyo, Arnold Chiveya, Crispen Dickson, Munyaradzi Diro Nyenye, James Jam, Kudakwashe Kumwala, Edwin Madhananga, Benson Maglasi, William Manondo, Raphael Manuvire, Blessing Moyo, Agrippa Murimba, Learnmore Muyambo, Themba Ndhlovu, Tanaka Ruzvidzo, Tendai Samanja, Jimmy Tigere, Raymond Uchena, Martin Vengesai, Francisco Zekumbawira