A new Genesis for DeMbare: Can Mangombe survive in the ‘lions’ den’?

As a member of the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP), Genesis Mangombe ought to have dealt with many difficult situations in life.

He probably handled at least one of the 208 027 criminal cases reported to the Police in the first quarter of 2022, according statistics released by The Zimbabwe National Statistics Agency (Zimstat).

Any sworn officer with the authority to carry out the law and maintain public order has been involved in problem-oriented policing and Mangombe is no exception.

But the soft-spoken officer is occupationally diversive. He is also football coach and appears to enjoy the tactical notebook more than the docket.

Mangombe is, based on his preferred style of play, one of the most underrated tacticians in the Castle Lager Premier Soccer League.

His tenure at Yadah was viewed by many as a success despite the Miracle Boys not winning any silverware, because of the entertaining football displayed by the Prophet Walter Magaya-owned side.

Is Mangombe ready for his next challenge? 

Last week, Mangombe took up arguably one of, if not the biggest challenge in his coaching career.

He was appointed the interim Dynamos head coach after the Harare giants parted ways with Herbert ‘Jompano’ Maruwa under unclear circumstances.

Mangombe was Maruwa’s assistant in the technical team appointed by DeMbare ahead of the 2023 season, following the departure of Tonderai Ndiraya.

The youthful coach’s elevation to the role of DeMbare head coach has delighted those who felt he should have been entrusted with the job in the first place.

He even believes his appointment is the entry point to DeMbare’s quest to end their 8-year trophy drought.

“Genesis means the beginning. Someone said we have not won this competition since it’s re-introduction. This time we want to work hard and see what we can achieve,” Mangombe told the media after DeMbare had edged Simba Bhora 1-0 at Babourfields Stadium on Saturday, to book a place in the Chibuku Super Cup quarter-finals.

A walk in the ‘lions’ den’

Since Kalisto Pasuwa left Dynamos after a historic four league titles on the bounce, no coach has been in the Glamour Boys’ dugout for two full seasons.

It is one of, if not the most challenging job in the domestic Premiership.

From an ever demanding and hard to please fanbase —which is the biggest in the country, to titular executives controlled by board chairman Bernard Marriott Lusengo, anyone sitting in the Dynamos dugout faces a lot of hurdles.

Ndiraya, Lloyd Mutasa, Lloyd Chigowe, have all tried on different occasions to bring back glory days in the blue half of the capital, and so did firebrand Portuguese Paulo Jorge Silva.

Portuguese coach Paulo Jorge Silva inked a 3-year deal to join Dynamos in 2016, but lasted only four months.
Portuguese coach Paulo Jorge Silva inked a 3-year deal to join Dynamos in 2016 but lasted only 4 months.

Chigowe, who is now Mangombe’s assistant,  publicly criticised Dynamos for sacking him just four games into the 2019 season.

Mablanyo, as Chigove is affectionately-known in the blue half of the capital, lost three of the first four games of the 2019 campaign and was shown the exit door.

Can Mangombe survive in the ‘lions’ den’?

Former Dynamos captain Memory Mucherahowa, believes Mangombe is not the right man for the DeMbare job, even on a temporary basis, despite the youthful coach’s tactical prowess.

“By appointing Mangombe on a temporary basis, the Dynamos executive made virtually the same mistake they made when they appointed Jompano (Maruwa),” Mucherahowa told Soccer24 from his base in Slough, United Kingdom.

“You see, I’m not saying they are both not good coaches, I’m saying so because Dynamos requires a coach who can challenge the executive on certain decisions, not one who just agrees with everything.

“Dynamos needs a coach who tells the executive or even (Bernard) Marriott, that “this is wrong”.

“I’m not saying that coach should control Dynamos in every apsect, but that coach should make decisions on everything related to the club’s technical issues, be it the appointment of his assistansts to the buying and selling of players, as well as how the squad is prepared for matches.

“During our time, we had Mhofu (Sunday Chidzambga). He was in charge and could disagree with the executive openly and they listened to him regardless, that is the kind of coach needed at Dynamos.

“I don’t know much about Mangombe, but if he is able to take full controll of technical issues and even challenge the executive, which I doubt anyway, then maybe he can succeed. But if not, he will be the next victim,” added Mucherahowa.


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