Grace Chingoma Senior Sports Reporter
CAPS United got one of their biggest crowds in recent years and grossed $73 483 on Sunday when they hosted Congolese giants TP Mazembe in a CAF Champions League tie at the National Sports Stadium. The Green Machine, though, took $21 286 after deductions. A total of 13 528 fans paid their way into the stadium. There was the usual debiting of 15 percent which goes towards the stadium levy, six percent to the Sports Commission as a levy.
Caf and Zifa levies and the costs of the police and security also drained the coffers. The weekend’s game saw 3 500 more people paying to watch CAPS United than the 10 000 who watched the Harare Derby last October.
Last year, in the first edition of the Harare Derby in May at Rufaro, DeMbare grossed $78 000 after 14 000 fans paid to watch the game. CAPS are set to get a minimum of $550 000 for reaching the Caf Champions League group stages.
Club chief executive Cuthbert Chitima said despite hiking the cheapest ticket to $5, they still enjoyed some commendable support.
“We are more than happy. We are happy for our fans, for the support and we really appreciate. Our supporters are beginning to come to the stadium and this has got to do with results we are getting.
“As long as we continue to play well, I am sure that the fans will keep coming in their numbers,” he said.
Chitima added that the club is set to reward the players for reaching this milestone.
“The incentives are always there when something like this happens. It is a matter of percentages, but they will definitely get something,” said Chitima.
“We still have five slots that we are yet to utilise. Normally, it is common that at this stage you may lose players who would have excelled to other clubs, so we need to be cognisant of that,” he said.
Leonard Tsipa, the CAPS United’s leading goalscorer last year, is set to return to the squad.