Sikhumbuzo Moyo, Senior Sports Reporter
HIGHLANDERS have finally agreed terms with two key players Simon Munawa and Rahman Kutsanzira and the club now expects to wrap up negotiations with two other players this week.
Bosso, who were beaten to their number one target Gift Mbweti by cash flush FC Platinum, will begin pre-season preparations with no worries of player talks for the first time in years.
“We said last December that we want to deal with the issue of players’ contracts well before the start of the 2017 preparations and it gives us pleasure in announcing that Munawa and Kutsanzira renewed their contracts last week, meaning we have retained 90 percent of the players we had last season,” said acting Highlanders chairman Modern Ngwenya.
He said Honest Moyo and Tendai Ngulube had also extended their stay and would be signing their contracts this week.
“Honest and Tendai agreed to remain with us, but are yet to sign their contract extensions because they have been on holiday in South Africa and we expect them this week.
“It’s unfortunate that we failed to get Mbweti, a player that the coaches wanted. We couldn’t match what FC Platinum offered, but we just have to live with the reality of their financial strength. So for now we will wait for the coaches to advise us on their next target because it’s not our duty to buy players on behalf of the coaches; they recommend and we do the administration side of things,” Ngwenya said.
He said they were also keen on re-engaging out of contract assistant coaches Amini Soma-Phiri and Cosmas “Tsano” Zulu.
“It’s obviously for continuity purposes. We can’t be hiring every year,” said Ngwenya.
Head coach Erol Akbay is in his native Netherlands and is expected to return in time for pre-season training.
Highlanders are eyeing the championship this season after meeting their top four target in 2016, during which they surprised themselves by earning the title contenders’ tag for the better part of the season until they were mauled 0-3 by FC Platinum in November.