Tadious Manyepo Sports Reporter
HARARE City midfiel, will be the centre of attention in today’s Chibuku Super Cup semi-final clash against Ngezi Platinum at Baobab.
Tournament favourites Highlanders welcome chief striker Prince Dube back into the fold in the other semi-final at Barbourfields when they host ZPC Kariba.
Manondo had scored in three consecutive Chibuku Super Cup matches since the tournament was re-introduced six years ago.
But the former Warriors forward is yet to open his account in this year’s contest.
Ironically, with him failing to rise to the occasion, none of his teammates have and Harare City have gone for 180 minutes, in the tournament, without scoring in open play.
Their first round match against CAPS United ended goalless as did their quarter-final battle against Triangle.
On both occasions they won on penalties.
City coach, Lloyd Chitembwe, has backed his vice-captain and he believes form, not history, is what matters in their showdown with Rodwell Dhlakama’s charges.
“It’s not really about how the team has performed in the Chibuku Super Cup in the previous years.
‘’It all comes down to how the team is performing. I think the team is doing well, of late, and we hope to continue on the same trajectory,” said Chitembwe.
His charges have had only two days to rest between today’s encounter and the quarter-final clash with Triangle on Wednesday at Rufaro.
“Preparations have been perfect, we have tried to regenerate some energy after a very difficult match against Triangle.
‘’We are ready and looking forward to the match against Ngezi Platinum Stars.
“We have a group of professional players who know what it means to be playing competitive football.
“What matters now is their ability to recover after that match two days ago. We tried by all means to help them refresh their bodies.”
Chitembwe has a full complement of the squad to choose his troops from.
“We are happy, morale is at a level we want it to be. We don’t have any injury concerns, which is one area which has been an issue.’’
Dhlakama has turned Ngezi around and they were unlucky to go down to FC Platinum in a league match at Mandava.
At their Ngezi fortress, they have proved a tough team to beat and a capacity crowd is expected to cheer them on as they eye the final.