Mbada stalls Buffaloes

Buffaloes FC flirtation with the Premier Soccer League remained in doubt early this week, as sponsor Mbada Diamonds were yet to pay the club’s initial instalment of the promised $200,000 annual donation.

Evans Gwekwerere is yet to receive his signing-on fees.
Evans Gwekwerere is yet to receive his signing-on fees.

The PSL season begins this weekend, with the team expected to travel to Hwange, but club chairman Hlanganiso Matangaidze said recently that they were yet to receive money from Mbada.

“It’s work in progress and I cannot really say much about it at this stage,” he said in a recent interview. Mbada corporate services executive George Manyaya would not say much either.

“I’m sure the two parties are communicating and I really cannot divulge details in the Press,” said the Mbada official, whose company has for the past two seasons donated $200,000 each year to the army side.

According to Premiership fixtures released recently, in the first eight rounds of league matches, Buffaloes will be away five times. Their home fixtures in those first eight rounds will see them play Chicken Inn, newly-promoted ZPC Kariba and FC Platinum.

The matches do not promise any meaningful returns on the turnstiles until Week Nine when they host Bulawayo giants Highlanders, who usually draw a huge crowd. The Mutare giants were also struggling to motivate their players, who had still not received their signing-on fees at the beginning of the week.

“Moral is very low in the camp right now. The players are waiting for their signing-on fees and right now there is nothing in the coffers,” said a club source. “The team also needs new uniforms, given the fact that some of the players whose names are inscribed on their jerseys have since left.”

One of the players said to be waiting for their money is former Warriors and Dynamos striker, Evans Gwekerere, who will be turning out for the army side this season. Last weekend, Buffaloes travelled to Harare for a tournament in which they reached the final, only to be outplayed by Harare City 2-0. They only got $1,500.

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