FOLLOWING his five star performances in between the sticks for Highlanders that saw him being voted the 2023 Castle Lager Premier Soccer League Goalkeeper of the Year, Bosso club captain Ariel Sibanda has expressed gratitude to his teammates.
Fondly known as Mangoye or Dawu to hordes of Bosso fans, the veteran goal minder put no foot wrong for Bosso for the greater part of the season.
“I am so grateful for the support and hard work of my teammates. I couldn’t have achieved this success without their dedication and collaboration. Thank you all for being an integral part of my success,” said Sibanda.
The dependable former Embakwe High School pupil has worn no other jersey except the Highlanders stripe and kissed no other club badge except the famous “Siyinqaba” inscribed shield and spear logo.
The former Warriors goalkeeper, who earned his first senior national team cap over 10 years ago when the late Rahman Gumbo was in charge, boasts of a massive 16 years of service at Bosso and clinching this year’s Goalkeeper of the Year gong could be the ideal development to put icing on the cake on his glittering football career.
If Sibanda (34) does stay on duty for his beloved Bosso next season, his two understudies Raphael Pitisi and Reward Muza will certainly need to up their game all in a bid to overthrow him.
Bosso has over the years produced cultic heroes for the club and Sibanda has established himself towards that cap.
Currently, he is the team captain.
Despite having a fine start with a 19 game unbeaten run, Highlanders faltered along the way as they found themselves limping in the second half of the season. .
This season Sibanda managed to produce 19 clean sheets and was part of the 2023 Soccer Stars 11 finalists.
He was also voted thrice before in 2012, 2018 and 2019 to make himself one of the most decorated individuals on the local scene.
“It’s a great honour to be voted the Goalkeeper of the Year but I feel disappointed with how we finished as a team. I feel honoured because there are a lot of good goalkeepers in the country, so it’s an honour to be named Goalkeeper of the Year for the fourth time. I’m carrying on. I still feel like I can still go on. I haven’t won the league with Highlanders and it’s my main priority,” said Sibanda.
Bosso finished the season in position five with 52 points, 14 behind champions Ngezi Platinum Stars.
They managed 13 wins, 13 draws and seven losses.
Earlier this week, Bosso officially announced that they had parted ways with expatriate coach Baltemar Brito