Albert Marufu in LONDON, England
UK-BASED former Dynamos players, led by their ex-captain the legendary midfielder Memory Mucherahowa, have added their voice to the team’s relegation woes calling on the supporters to find mechanisms to reclaim ownership of the popular Harare club.
Mucherahowa feels Dynamos’ problems are emanating from the management structure at the club led by board chairman Bernard Marriott.
The former DeMbare skipper accused Marriot of having virtually grabbed the club as his personal property after isolating the other members of the Dynamos family.
Mucherahowa, who captained Dynamos to three championship medals and various medals that include CAF Champions League runners-up medal, said drastic action needs to be taken and that should begin with team’s supporters reclaiming ownership of their club.
“As a former player and captain, people have been calling me everyday asking why we have been quiet when the team is facing a real danger of being relegated.
“We have tried as former players to give ideas but the current Dynamos board chairperson Bernard Marriot, who claims to be the owner of the club, does not want any former players near the club.
“As former players we have tried to engage the new executive led by Isaiah Mupfurutsa but we got nowhere. This executive is just ceremonial as they do not have any power at all.
“Only one person has power and has isolated all former players like Moses Chunga, Sunday Chidzambwa and myself. We are not wanted anywhere near the club. What crime did we commit? I have tried my best to offer advice, but now it is time for the supporters to reclaim their team,” said Mucherahowa, who is now based in England.
Dynamos, who recently fired coach Lloyd Mutasa and replaced him with Lloyd Chigowe and Murape Murape, have garnered a measly 31 points from 29 matches and occupy position 15, which is the relegation cut-off spot.
Dynamos’ last six games in the league involve city rivals CAPS United, Black Rhinos, Herentals, Triangle, Mutare City and Nichrut.
Mucherahowa said the team’s supporters should not boycott the team’s matches but throng Rufaro in their thousands in tomorrow’s Chibuku Super Cup quarter-final tie against Herentals, not only to support their team, but reclaim it.
“We are in this situation because of one man, Marriot. We hear that the team is being run by Marriot’s wife. She is the one involved in the hiring and firing of coaches. This must stop. Dynamos is a big institution and a number of people worked hard for it to be such a powerful brand.
“It belongs to the community so the fans should reclaim their team this Sunday. I am not going to tell them how they will do it because they know. This is their team. Supporters have the power to take over that team because it is theirs. God forbid, but if we are to go to Division One with Marriot in charge that will be the end of Dynamos. He is clueless. We have changed chairmen and coaches, but results have not been coming,” he said.
Mucherahowa also said the current crop of players should also understand the history of the club and should know that in their last six games, they are fighting for a massive institution.
“We have been hearing of stories that certain players play for a coach of their choice. That spirit should not exist at Dynamos FC. Players should play for Dynamos and not their choice of coaches. If they have problems with that, they should leave the club. These players are also not match fit as we hear that they train for just an hour! This is really sad,” he said.
“Problems at institution such as Dynamos or Highlanders affect a number of people. These teams unite people regardless of their political affiliation. I think even the Sports Commission or Parliament should summon the board chairman to explain the problems at the club. Government uses the team in state functions such as Independence or Defence Forces Days,” Mucherahowa said.
Former DeMbare defender Chamu Musanhu also lamented the team’s current situation.
“The club has been wrongly run for a long time. The turning point should have been the 1998 Champions League success, but the opposite happened. We need new ideas involving former and current players, the executive and the supporters,” said Musanhu.
Ex-goalkeeper DeMbare Obey Murefu added his voice:
“It is high time the question of Dynamos ownership is settled. This team has been run wrongly for a long time because there is no clear ownership structure.”
Another former Dynamos goalkeeper, Peter “Chops” Fanwell, said problems have always been there at DeMbare for a long time but were being masked by success on the field.
“Players need to realise what is at stake here. The team is facing relegation. The players should know that it is their responsibility to serve the club. If they win, supporters will start coming back and more money will be made in the process. They should defend the Dynamos brand,” Fanwell said.