FC Platinum lick their wounds

HARARE - While FC Platinum found the going tough in the African Champions League at the weekend, it was not the same case for other Zimbabweans taking part in continental club football competitions.

The Zimbabwean champions suffered a 3-0 defeat at the hands of Angolan side Desportivo Premeiro Agosto in Luanda last Sunday in their preliminary round first leg clash.

Norman Mapeza’s side now has a huge task on their hands in the second leg scheduled for Mandava Stadium next Wednesday.

To reach the final qualifying round, Pure Platinum Play will need to beat the Angolans 3-0 to take the tie to a penalty shoot-out or 4-0 to progress after 90 minutes.

Any four-goal margin victory would help FC Platinum overcome the heavy first leg defeat and progress to meet either Bidvest Wits of South Africa or Pamplemousses.

Mapeza and his men have everything to do next week in order to keep up their dream alive of reaching the group stages of the African Champions League.

This year is the only second time Pure Platinum Play are taking part in the African Champions League after their previous campaign in 2012 which also ended in disappointment after losing to Sudanese giants El Merreikh in the first round.

On the other hand, Tanzanian side Young Africans, where the Zimbabwean duo of Donald Ngoma and Thabani Kamusoko play, emerged with a slender 1-0 lead in their preliminary round first leg clash against St Louis United of Seychelles.

Kamusoko and Ngoma did not feature in the first leg tie against St Louis since they are just returning from  long-term injuries.

The Zimbabwean duo started full training with their teammates at the end of January after missing their entire first half of the 2017-18 season.

Without the Zimbabwean duo, Yanga scored their only goal in the 67th minute through Juma Mahadhi.
Now faced with a tough trip to Victoria for the second leg next weekend, Yanga coach George Lwandamina might be forced to include the two Zimbabweans in his travelling party.

The Tanzanian giants could have been carrying a healthy 2-0 lead for the second leg but Zambian forward Obrey Chirwa missed a 24th minute penalty.

The former FC Platinum forward lost his footing as he was about to take the spot kick.

Lwandamina refused to blame his countryman for the missed opportunity after the match.

“Every player can miss a penalty. He is not the first player to miss a penalty. You can talk to him and he is so disappointed. But it is difficult to blame Chirwa for that,” the former Chipolopolo coach said.

“He is the best player and has all qualities but missing a penalty is a part of football.”

In the African Confederation Cup, Matthew Rusike’s new South African side Cape Town City FC secured a slender first leg 0-1 away win over Young Buffaloes of Swaziland in the preliminary round.

Ghanaian Nana Akosah-Bempah scored the only goal of the match for the Super Diski side nine minutes from time at the Somhlolo National Stadium, Lobamba.

Rusike recently signed for the Citizens from Tunisian side Club Africain at the end of last month and did not play against Young Buffaloes.

The Zimbabwe international forward is not yet registered to take part in Africa’s second tier inter-club football competition.

Rusike, who scored the winning goal only two minutes in his Cape Town City debut against Bidvest Wits in the Nedbank Cup last week, will only feature in the competition if Benni McCarthy’s side reaches the group stages.

Comments (2)

FC Platinum have a lot to do in the reverse fixture. Mapeza is a good coach no doubt, but the African Safari is no playground for novices.

michael - 17 February 2018

Never lose hope guys, lets put a good fight.

Lazarus - 20 February 2018

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