Innocent Kurira, Sports Reporter
HIGHLANDERS coach Hendrikus Pieter de Jongh says there will be no favours for relegation-threatened Bulawayo Chiefs when the two sides meet in a league encounter at Barbourfields Stadium this afternoon.
Chiefs who are desperate to survive the chop visit neighbours, Highlanders, who are chasing a possible top-four finish.
“We have respect for our opponents but we will try and get a good result. I’m a man who believes in fair play so we will give it our all. I have told the players to go for it. Our opponents need the points and teams that are ranked low get points at this stage of the league everywhere in world. It will be a difficult game for us,” said De Jongh.
The Dutchman’s first appearance at Barbourfields Stadium was back in September, in a game Bosso beat Bulawayo Chiefs 3-1 to mark what was the Bulawayo giants’ resurgence. Though he sat on the stands for that encounter, the Dutchman reckons it was his first official game in charge of the Bulawayo giants.
Clad in his black suit and white shirt, De Jongh barked instructions from the VIP enclosure and quickly charmed the Bosso faithful with his passion for the game. Since then, his romance with the Bosso supporters has blossomed.
The Dutchman is fully aware of Chiefs’ giant-killing exploits and has called on his charges to guard against complacency after the Chibuku Cup win.
“Again, it will be a difficult game. What is important for us will be to have the right mentality. They are ranked low on the ranking but they have the power to climb up the ranking. They play very well, they beat Chicken lnn in their last game, won at FC Platinum, so l know it will be very difficult game.
“After winning a cup competition it was party time for us, it will be difficult for us to have our players focus back for this game but we will try our best to get a good result. We intended to train at the match venue today (yesterday) but the rain stopped us from doing that,” said De Jongh.
Chiefs, who are under the tutelage of a proven tactician, Thulani Sibanda, will be no pushovers for the Bulawayo giants. In their maiden season they stunned Bosso 1-0 before narrowly losing 3-2 in the return leg. — @innocentskizoe