|Sports, Manica Diamonds new head coach Johannes Nhumwa (Centre)|
MUTARE - As the traction towards the return of football in the country continues to gain momentum, all is perfect and organised for Manica Diamonds FC who are eager for their second dance in the much-coveted Castle Lager Premier Soccer League (PSL).
Gem Boys paraded their diamonds in their debut PSL season and have resumed group-training under the tutelage of Johannes Nhumwa aka Dutch Mentor.
Team manager Masimba Chihowa told TellZim News that their books were clean and that their players were getting what they signed for without any delay.
“We paid all our players and we do not have any bad relations with them since all of them are paid very well without any problems. Players are happy because we do not owe any of them but they are all paid their full salaries.
Chihowa confirmed that they started training last Tuesday but added they had not yet had any new signings.
“All players are back on training and we started training on Tuesday last week. We trained the whole week and this week we are also busy training.
“No new players available and we did not release any players all are available. They are eagerly ready to play and only waiting for football to kick start,” said Chihowa.
Chihowa also said they expected to play very well like what they did last time in 2019 as they completed their first taste of topflight football on position five.
“We expect to play very well like what we did in 2019 season before action was stopped. We were playing some quality football and the team finished fifth after the boys put up a solid performance. I also hope the team will continue with their good performances and take it from where we left it,” said Chihowa.
All Manica Diamonds players have been reportedly tested for Covid-19 and all results came in negative.
In an interview, Nhumwa said they have no changes from the team and said he was targeting a better performance and finish in the top four.
“So far there are no changes from the team and the setup is still the same. We have not yet signed any new player but we will definitely look into that if there is need.
“All the players are available and they are all training very well and I am confident that we will finish the upcoming season in the top four,” said Nhumwa.
Nhumwa took over from seasoned gaffer, Luke Masomere who parted ways with the Mutare giants after a spate of poor results.
However, critics accused Nhumwa of hijacking and toppling Masomere since he was his lieutenant when he at the helm of the club.
Nhumwa went on to produce some good results when he was on the driver’s seat, earning him probably the most challenging job in his career.
Nhumwa’s job at Manica Diamonds is reportedly being eyed by many top gaffers who are being charmed by the solid funding.
During the height of Covid-19 lockdown, the club lost talented midfielder Last Jesi to Sudanese side Al Hilal and have also secured the services of former Masvingo Pirates and Masvingo United speedy forward Michael Tapera at the end of the 2019 season.