Eddie Chikamhi Sports Reporter
CAPS United new coach Mark Harrison says he knows all about the Harare Derby and is looking forward to the big clashes against Dynamos, starting with the pre-season Sino-Zim Cement Cup at Rufaro this Sunday.The nomadic coach assumed official duties this week after missing a month of the clubâs pre-season preparations.
The Green Machine also unveiled former Highlanders coach, Mark Mathe, as one of their assistant coaches yesterday.
Mathe was introduced to the CAPS United officials and is expected to be unveiled to the players in due course.
He was interviewed by Harrison on Monday.
Harrison said he was aware of the huge Derby expectations but wants to use Sundayâs match mainly to appraise his players.
The Sino-Zim Cement Cup was arranged by the Chinese Federation of Zimbabwe to commemorate 35 years of bilateral relations between Zimbabwe and China.
Winners will pocket US$15 000 while US$10 000 has been set aside for the losing team.
The English coach said he was looking forward to more difficult assignments between the two giants in the explosive Harare Derby when the season proper gets underway.
âI am very aware of it (the Harare Derby). I know itâs a massive game, I know itâs massive for the supporters, massive for the two clubs and itâs massive for the players,â said Harrison.
âBut, no doubt, no game across the world is any different. I have played in Derby games myself, I know what it is about. But at the end of the day we have had no proper preparations for this game on Sunday.
âSo, I am not going into it being too expectant. Obviously, we would want to pull out a good show for the supporters, but itâs going to be a tough game.â
Makepekepe started their pre-season late under assistant coaches Brenna Msiska and Fungai âTostaoâ Kwashi.
Their new coach is still to familiarise himself with his players as CAPS United are almost starting on a new leaf after losing several key players during the off-season break.
The side was still to decide its squad for 2015 by last Fridayâs preliminary registration deadline as Harrison had insisted he wanted to have a closer look at the players at his disposal.
While their opponents Dynamos have engaged in a series of practice matches, the Green Machine concede that they are still behind and have only played twice with Ngezi Platinum and Dongo Sawmill.
Harrison believes the clash with DeMbare will give him an idea of what to expect in his first season at CAPS United.
âI think going into that game on Sunday, it will give me an idea of our targets. Dynamos are one of the strongest clubs in the country, obviously.
âSo when we play them it will give us an idea of what we have and what we need to do and what weâve got to push for. So itâs a good game to have and Iâm looking forward to it.
âI think at the end of the day, whatever the outcome, it will give us an idea of where we stand at this moment and what work we got to do to get to where we need to go.
âI keep saying this, and I am sure you guys will be sick of hearing it, itâs a process. Itâs not going to happen overnight. We will gradually grow and get stronger and stronger.
âBut everybody has got to be patient around us, we have just lost 11 first team players. Nobody is hiding away from the fact. So now we got to build again. It will take a little bit of time but we will get there.â
Harrison said he was aware that the team needs to win silverware.
âObviously, we would want to end up with something at the end of the season but there are no goals set, there is no target set at the moment.
âWhat we are doing here is a long term project and everybody at the club is under no illusion that it is a long term project. We are all of the same mindset.
âNobody has said we must go and win this game on Sunday, nobody said weâve got to and win the Cup. There is no goal like that, what we are aiming at right now is to create a strong football club, a strong infrastructure and make sure that we have the biggest football club in Zimbabwe at the end.â