A MORE competitive cast of Castle Lager Premier League teams this season ensured Dynamos’ title march was not as fluid as in the past with the erratic nature at the top of the log throughout the season making the 2013 edition one to remember.
The fans were kept on the edge throughout the term as at least four teams swapped the top spot on several occasions. It was never clear even on the final day, who would claim the coveted prize.
The Dynamos fans would have wanted their team to power their way through with gusto but this was a tough season where maximum points were hard to come by, especially in away matches.
Three teams, champions Dynamos, Highlanders and Harare City all finished on 54 points and none trail-blazed and dispatched teams week after week like past champions.
Only 16 points separate DeMbare at the top and the relegated Black Mambas who finished 13th.
DeMbare dropped 36 points on the way and still managed to win the title courtesy of superior goal difference after the intriguing three-team tie.
In the 2012 season Dynamos powered to 21 wins, but this time the Glamour Boys were not as dominant with just 14 wins and a massive 12 draws added to their four defeats.
In the 2012 season Dynamos scored 58 goals at the expense of 15 but this time they managed 43 and conceded 22.
Monomotapa who finished fourth in the 2012 season won more matches that season than Dynamos did this year in another championship winning season.
Only four teams, Caps United, FC Platinum, Harare City, and Black Mambas recorded more points in the just ended season than their previous campaign.
Caps United who finished on 49 points this term recorded a ten-point surge, while FC Platinum will be encouraged by their seven-point improvement with Harare City showing the best progress after leaping from 2012’s 40 points to 54 this term. Black Mambas’ four-point improvement saw them avoid the drop.
Dynamos coach Kalisto Pasuwa attributed the plunge in points to a more competitive league where clubs with better financial clout gained promotion at the beginning of the term.
“If you look at it we had financially stable clubs coming in at the start of the season,” said Pasuwa. “If you look at the relegated lot this season, it was more about money except in the case of Black Mambas. The other clubs were struggling financially and they suffered the consequences of the chop. But other clubs like Triangle and How Mine for instance, did not surprise in their performances. They had the money and they managed to compete for some good and experienced players whom they blended with their youth. For most of their players the Premier League was not a new experience. That is why it was difficulty to collect maximum points this season.”
Pasuwa said there was no drop in standards in the leading pack but it was more to do with other clubs closing the gap.
“In the previous season we could almost guarantee ourselves maximum points at home especially against these smaller teams. But it was not the case this time. It was very difficult to play away and collect three points, especially against teams outside Harare.”