Former Highlanders captain Felix Chindungwe was offloaded by the Bulawayo giants as he could no longer cope with the high tempo football they have adopted, coach Erol Akbay has said.
Chindungwe was a surprise exclusion from Highlanders when the club released its provisional 2017 squad, despite the player himself saying he was still a Bosso player and was eager to stay on at the club.
The dreadlocked former Soccer Star of the Year finalist was released together with goalkeeper Njabulo Nyoni, striker Kasimero Chimbadzwa, who saw little game time, as well as Julius Daudi.
Chindungwe lost his place in the starting line-up to star defender Peter Muduhwa, who has never looked back ever since he got his first team call-up.
“Felix was no longer coping with our high tempo football as compared to the youngsters we have. He is a good player certainly, but our style of play was no longer fine with him. Other players were improving and are still improving, but Felix was not; his performance in terms of our style of play was going down. If you look at Peter (Muduhwa) and Tendai (Ndlovu), their game is improving greatly, but not Felix, hence our painful decision to let him go,” said Akbay.
Chindungwe is now believed to be training with Tsholotsho.
Akbay believes teams should be afraid of Highlanders this season, but refused to commit himself to the league title.
“Highlanders is a big team and must always drive to win the league title, but we don’t have top class players, we have a top class team, I have no doubt about that,” said Akbay.
He played down utterances by acting chairman Modern Ngwenya that the coaches have no reason not to win the league title this season, as they have brought in all the players they requested as the technical bench.
Bosso failed to secure the signatures of big Francesco Zekumbawire and the pint-sized Gift Mbweti, who eventually signed for ZPC Kariba and FC Platinum respectively.
“Everyone has his own opinion that we can’t help, but he (Ngwenya) never spoke to me about that. No he never called me and told me that we have no reason not to win the title,” Akbay said.
Ngwenya was recently quoted in the media declaring that Highlanders was the team to beat this year and that the title is certain