FC Platinum finally exorcise 2011 ghost

HARARE - For the past seven years, FC Platinum had had to live with that demon of their spectacular collapse towards the 2011 season.

The Zvishavane-based side arrived in the Zimbabwean top flight league in that same season and immediately attracted the scorn of most football fans due to their vast resources.

Even in their home town, they are not the most popular club as that right is reserved for Shabanie Mine.

They also had to beat the brunt of the most jokes As they famously choked under pressure allowing Dynamos to come from behind to close a 12-point gap before winning the title on goal difference.

Since then, the platinum miners have had to watch DeMbare win four straight league titles while Chicken Inn and CAPS United have also got onto the act.

However, all of that changed on Saturday at Ascot Stadium when Norman Mapeza guided FC Platinum to their maiden league title following a 0-2 away win over Chapungu.

What made the victory sweet for the platinum miners is the fact that they beat Dynamos into second place, a team that had left a great dent in their young history following that painful 2011 collapse.

For two men, Charles Sibanda and Ali Sadiki this triumph was long over due and went a long way in easing that pain of losing out the title on goal difference to DeMbare.

The duo is the club’s longest serving players and for Sibanda in particular, he was part of that 2011 squad that suffered at the hands of Dynamos. Sadiki joined the platinum miners in 2012.

“I feel very happy because it has been a very long since we knocked on the Premiership title door since 2011 and indeed this year was our year. I’m looking forward to another crown; we will keep on fighting hard next year,” Sibanda told the Daily News.

“I’m happy for the coach, he’s happy for us and we are excited for the team and all the people who rallied behind FC Platinum.

“I think the events of 2011 where we missed on the championship on the last hurdle made us believe in ourselves that we can win the league as long as we are fighting hard to get something at the end of the season.”

The former Highlanders striker said discipline carried the season for Pure Platinum Play as they went about their business as a team throughout the season.

“We waited for almost six years and now we have landed the championship,” he said.

“I think we did all that the coach required of us, the philosophy of the team was just out of this world. I think the best that we did as a team was upholding discipline which really helped us a lot.

“We also played well according to the coach’s instructions and we have to work hard like we did this year to achieve what we will set ourselves to achieve next season.”

Sadiki concurred with Sibanda on teamwork being the vital ingredient that helped propel Pure Platinum Play to glory.

“I’m happy we have won the title, there was no individualism but we worked as a team. We all fought hard from the beginning until now we have been fighting hard and the coach has been telling us to keep on working hard because of the light at the end of the tunnel. I’m happy for the team and club,” Sadiki said.

“Since 2011 we have wanted to win this trophy and now we have delivered the championship as a team and I think it’s a reward for the executive to say ‘thank you guys for having confidence in us, giving us everything, all the sponsorship’ we say thank you to them and we are happy we have won this tite

“In 2011 we missed it, we were close, we have to forget 2011 it was a bad year for us but history has been made. In the Champions League we want to fight, we want to do better than what CAPS did but it needs hard work, we have to work. We can’t just say we want to win it and yet we don’t work, we are going to fight harder for us to go and fight in the Champions League.”

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