By Tadious Manyepo
Harare City coach Mark Harrison has warned his charges against underrating Bulawayo City when the two sides clash in the first round of the Chibuku Super Cup first round at Rufaro this afternoon.
The holders begin their defence of the richest knock-out tournament without three of their regular players.
Ishmael Wadi, scorer of all their last two goals in the league, the experienced Moses Muchenje and goalkeeper Ryan Harrison are all out through injury.
Harare City are seeking a third win in the tournament and Harrison warned his men not to dwell much into what happened in the past.
“Look, at the end of the day, history counts for nothing, it’s what we will do in the game against Bulawayo City tomorrow (today) that matters,” said Harrison.
“It’s going to be a tough encounter against a team which is fighting relegation in the league and, obviously, they could see this tournament as an opportunity to get some glory this season.
“I guess that’s very similar to what happened to us last year, we got relegated and won the Chibuku Super Cup.
The Englishman, who has transformed Harare City into a formidable outfit in the league, believes his team can win the match if they apply themselves well.
“We have to know that at the end of the day, there has got to be a winner, so we have to be prepared to fight to the end of the match.
“But, look, we will enter the game trying to be positive, we will enter the game trying to win it, but definitely I don’t want to look at what happened in the past.
“We are focusing on beating Bulawayo City in a game we know they will throw everything to try and win it as well.”
He hinted he will throw in a relatively young squad in today’s game.
“We are missing three senior players, Ryan (Harrison), Moses (Muchenje) and Ishmael (Wadi) who are all out injured,” he said.
“Expect a relatively young squad in the game against Bulawayo City. There are some players who are starting to shine through and it’s time for them to stand up tomorrow (today) and show what they can deliver.
“As I have said earlier, history counts for nothing, every game is new. History counts for absolutely nothing. It’s eleven players versus eleven, Bulawayo City versus Harare City and the backgrounds of both clubs already adds flavour to the contest.”
Striker William Manondo, who is the tournament’s all-time leading scorer, urged his teammates to be fully focussed on the assignment.
“As Harare City, we always feel motivated whenever we play in the Chibuku Super Cup,” he said.
“I know I am the tournament’s top scorer and that’s pressure for me, but I am not interested in making individual records, rather the team comes first.”