The Sunday Mail
Lisping philosophically, a leg languidly flung on the dashboard of the Toyota Altezza that Dynamos gave him when he renewed his contract last July, a relaxed Denver Mukamba keeps checking the rear-view mirror, as if peering back at last Sunday’s Harare Derby.
The 25-year-old midfielder left De-Mbare with a lot of baggage, crossing over to bitter rivals Caps United on March 6.
The footballer now sounds like he has regained his mojo.
“There is life after Dynamos and I am proving it,” Mukamba tells The Sunday Mail Sport after Caps United’s training session last Wednesday.
Makepekepe coach Lloyd Chitembwe gave Mukamba the freedom to do what he knows best in last weekend’s clash against Dynamos, and the Highfield-bred star repaid him with a 69th minute winner that had quality written all over it.
“You could see that the lad was pumped up in the build-up to the derby. He really wanted this match and I am happy he delivered,” Chitembwe said.
Mukamba evidently had something to prove against DeMbare side that was plain and simple fed up with his antics.
There was a spring in his step as he walked onto the park, and the way he saluted his fans behind the Mabelreign end goal spoke of a man on a mission.
Then quite unexpectedly, just before referee Norman Matemera blew the kick-off whistle, Mukamba rushed to the Dynamos bench and hugged his former coach and “football father” Lloyd Mutasa.
Exactly 69 minutes later, Mukamba expertly tucked home a Brian Muzondiwa cut back to cap a memorable day for the Dynamos outcast who has new home at Makepekepe and another father named Lloyd.
“Let me tell you something, I have no hard feelings towards Mutasa. He remains my football father and I even wished him good luck when we hugged before the match,” says Mukamba.
“I don’t know how our relationship ended up like this, but I am sure there are people who went behind my back and exaggerated things to Mutasa. It was unfortunate the coach listened to those people.
“So last Sunday I was out to prove my critics wrong, I wanted to prove wrong those DeMbare fans who were saying Denver apera, akungoita zvekuma location. I wanted them to see that I am still the old Denver who can make things happen on the pitch.”
We had to ask Mukamba what he did with the money he was given by Caps United fans after delivering a Harare Derby win.
“I didn’t have time to count it, there were lots of two and five dollar notes . . . there were coins as well, so what I did is just stuff the money into my kit and take it to my granny, Gogo Kawinga, in Highfield.
“I told her to count it and use it for her own needs. She said it was $200 and I said to her, ‘Gogo this is my package from Caps United fans and it’s yours, take it’.”
And the celebration after scoring against his former side?
“That’s me; I celebrate every goal (even if) it has been scored against a former team,” smiles Mukamba.
As our exchange winds down, Mukamba reveals that he was not going to the high-density suburb of Highfield but to Avondale – his new lodgings.
“I have moved out of Fio (Highfield) because I want to concentrate. Concentration is key now my because I want the 2018 Soccer Star of the Year award and a return to the Warriors’ fold,” says Mukamba before driving off.