BY TAWANDA TAFIRENYIKA
VISA delays have resulted in Harare football giants Caps United having to wait a bit longer before they could assess their targets from Nigeria who they have invited for trials.
The Green Machine last year invited goalkeeper Wakeel Adenkule Okunade, central defender Emmanuel Arinze Nwangwu and striker Sunday Kenneth Udoh for a two-week assessment.
But the trio is yet to arrive in Zimbabwe because of delays in the processing of visas.
No official comment could be obtained from Caps United, but a close source who is privy to events at the club confirmed that the club was still hoping to get the players into the country.
“The players are coming. We have already applied for their visas, but we don’t have the actual date because the process is taking long. The position with travellers from Nigeria is that they are required to get visas for them to come here. With other countries like Ghana and Cameroon it’s different, they do not need visas to come into the country,” the source who requested anonymity said.
Kepekepe have looked to West Africa as they seek to assemble a strong squad which can challenge for honours in the upcoming season after agonisingly coming close last term.
They were beaten to the finishing line by FC Platinum on the last day of the league programme.
Should the Nigerians possess the qualities that meet the Caps United demands, they would be given contracts.
Goalkeeper Okunade is expected to replace Prosper Chigumba and Chris Mverechena who have been offloaded by the club, while central defender Nwangwu, who has played for Kaduna United, Elkanemi Warriors, Heartland FC and Abia Warriors in his home country is set to help solidify the Caps defence which has been weakened following the injury to veteran defender Method Mwanjali who is now set to be redeployed as one of the assistant coaches.
Striker Udoh, who has played for Sunshine FC is also set to give Caps coach Darlington Dodo options in attack should he impress.
Caps United have already started their pre-season preparations as they await the arrival of the trio.
The team has been busy on the transfer market and have raided city rivals Harare City for three players so far; snatching away Munyaradzi Diro Nyenye, Ishmael Wadi and young Tatenda Tumba.
Apart from Harare City, Caps United have also snapped up two Yadah players Leeroy Mavhunga and Enock Karembo. Defender Carlos Mavhurume has also joined from Herentals, and so is goalkeeper Wallace Magalane, previously with FC Platinum.
There has also been a massive clear out at Caps United who decided against renewing contracts of a number of senior players including former captain Hardlife Zvirekwi, Dominic Mukandi, Carlos Rusere, Lincoln Zvasiya, Valentine Ndaba and Kudzanayi Nyamupfukudza.
The players were fingered in a player mutiny ahead of their league penultimate game against Ngezi Platinum which they lost 3-2 to give FC Platinum the edge.
Soccer Star of the Year Joel Ngodzo and striker Dominic Chungwa have also left the club to join Zambian teams, while Blessing Sarupinda is reportedly in Portugal for trials.
The club is also battling to tie down Soccer Star of the Year finalist Phineas Bamusi, who continues to be linked with a move to rivals Dynamos.
They have, however, managed to retain some key players from last season such as Ronald “Rooney” Chitiyo, Justice Jangano, Valentine Musarurwa, John Zhuwawu and Kelvin Ndebele.