Ngezi Platinum coach Akbay backs DeMbare


Ngezi Platinum coach Akbay backs DeMbare.

Their progress since Tonderai Ndiraya took over the reins has been undeniable and their recent results have turned doubters into believers. After the 2-0 win over Mushowani Stars at the weekend, Dynamos has closed the gap on log leaders FC Platinum to just five points. Though the league champions have a game in hand on Dynamos, Ndiraya’s men will feel they have the whole back end of the season to wipe off the deficit.

Erol AkbayThree wins and three draws in their last six matches attest Dynamos’ resurgence. From a fragile squad that looked like relegation material at the start of the season, the Harare giants suddenly looks like the Dynamos of old.

Ndiraya has transformed the lacklustre team from pretenders to title contenders and there has been a noticeable change in the players’ attitude. Rivals are
beginning to take notice.

Ngezi Platinum coach Erol Akbay, whose side are also chasing the title, has admitted that he is genuinely worried about the resurgence of Dynamos, who he is now backing to challenge for the championship this season.

The Dutch coach was part of the crowd that watched the Glamour Boys beat Mushowani at Rufaro Stadium at the weekend, and was left convinced that Dynamos are now a changed team from the comical bunch that started the season.

“Dynamos are now playing better football than when I saw them at the beginning of the season. Today they played and scored and that is very important for the team. They also scored two goals and had more chances to score and that is important for any team. As a coach that is what you want and you cannot complain.

The second half has just begun but the way Dynamos played, they can challenge for the title. But its too early to say this and that team will win it, we are just getting into the second half and several teams still have a chance, its still open,” he said. Akaby’s team are a point ahead of Dynamos and has a chance to close gap on the top sides when they host Triangle tomorrow.

The Dutchman’s submissions though are contrary to those of Ndiraya who, despite charming the team’s supporters, neutrals as well as opponents, still feels his lads are yet to reach the high levels he demands of them. After the Mushowani win, he suggested his players still needed to work harder in order to compete with the top teams.

Maybe he is not happy with his team’s conversion rate as they had not scored more than a goal in a match before the weekend, with all their wins since he took overachieved by a single goal. “I am happy with scoring two goals after a long time. It’s the first time we have scored two goals since I came in and it’s quite refreshing, though overall I was not impressed by the performance,” he said.

“There is a certain level we want to reach. There is a certain standard we want to achieve and I think we are not yet there. But it’s coming up and we hope to build on this result, build on the momentum. We have set ourselves a target of winning our first five games and so far, we have won one and we hope we will do much better. We will build on this result,” he said.

The other midweek match tomorrow will involve defending champions FC Platinum who host Harare City at Mandava Stadium looking to extend their lead at the top
of the log standings.

The Zvishavane side were inactive on the local front at the weekend as they were engaged in a Caf Champions League assignment away to Big Nyasa Bullets in Malawi. But with their main rival Chicken Inn losing to ZPC Kariba, they returned home to find themselves still top of the log standings by a point.

It was Caps United who actually closed the gap on the champions when they beat Manica Diamonds 1-0 away in Rusape to move to 31 points, one behind the log leaders. The Green Machine leapfrogged Chicken Inn who remained on 30 points.