CAPS United got off to a good start in their championship bid after they thrashed rivals Chapungu 3-0 in a Castle Lager Premiership match at the National Sports Stadium on Sunday.
The victory was made all the sweeter after bitter rivals Dynamos were handed a comprehensive defeat of the same score-line by defending champions Chicken Inn at Barbourfields Stadium on Saturday.
The Green Machine were missing veteran forwards Leonard Tsipa and Simba Nhivi through injury but that counted for little as they outclassed Chapungu on the score board.
Midfielder Joel Ngodzo thrust United ahead on 37 minutes, before Tafadzwa Rusike added the second three minutes later with vice captain Moses Muchenje scoring the insurance goal.
Last season, Caps United were beaten in both league matches by Chapungu but managed to halt their poor run against the air-force side.
After struggling for fluency in the 15 minutes in which they allowed Chapungu to dominate and threaten with some dangerous raids through Allan Tavarwisa and Nhlahla Ncube, Caps United soon got into their groove.
But veteran Gift Phiri who anchored Chapungu midfield came close on 31 minutes with a speculative long range drive that narrowly missed target much to the relief of Caps United fans.
United however, continued to probe their opponents with Dominic Chungwa coming close on 36 minutes.
The heavens then opened just before the restart and when the game eventually resumed, it appeared to make play difficult for both teams as players struggled for balance.
Chapungu made a double substitution on46 minutes introducing Patrick Khumbula for Allan Tavarwisa and Maxwell Mavhuto for Cleophas Kapupurika.
But still the Green Machine went on to record a comfortable victory as Muchenje scored the insurance goal, connecting from a cross from the left by Ronald Pfumbidzai.
“As far as the result is concerned we are very happy,” said United coach Chitenbwe.
“It has just reminded us of what we are likely to achieve and we need to continue working hard, giving as much effort as we can. We were not so clinical in terms of performance but in terms of goals and to grind out a result like this we need to keep working hard.
“It was a good start. There is no team that can dominate the entire match and I think Chapungu made life difficult for us in the first quarter but at the end of the day we were very decisive at the crucial moments of the game.”Advertisement
Chapungu coach John Nyikadzino said: “We lost to a better side. Caps United played better than us in terms of utilising the chances that came their way.
“We dominated play in the first 20 minute we got quite a number of chances and failed to utilise those chance and when Caps United were in control of the match, they utilised their chances and they managed to punish us.
“There was lapse of concentration. That is how we lost the match. However, it is the first game of the season. We look forward to the next game against Hwange and we look forward to playing better than we did today and come up with three points.”