Mutare City derail Ngezi Platinum

RUSAPE – Tonderai Ndiraya blasted his team’s attitude after suffering a huge blow to their title ambitions following a disappointing defeat at the hands of fighting Mutare City Rovers in a Castle Lager Premiership match on Sunday.

Ndiraya’s charges came into the match in need of nothing less than a victory after log leaders FC Platinum had posted a convincing 3-1 victory over Bulawayo Chiefs on Saturday to open a four-point lead at the top of the table.

Although the visitors enjoyed more possession it amounted to nothing against a disciplined Magusha side that took an early lead after only 13 minutes through Billy Vheremu.

To their credit, the victory kept their hopes of survival alive as they took their tally to 18 points but remain third from bottom. Ndiraya slammed his team for not having the right mentality to take the win as they created and fluffed numerous chances.

“It is very damaging. I think we played very badly today. Very badly. The attitude! Everything was not right. The commitment was not really there. I thought the pitch was difficult, it was very difficult pitch to play but it’s no excuse because if we really want to win the championship we just need to go wherever we go, even under the water, and get results. That’s what we have demanded from players,” Ndiraya said.

Ngezi face Highlanders in their next game and will need to take all three points as the league goes into the home stretch with only 10 games remaining.

Mutare City Rovers were on cloud nine after their disciplined performance with resolute defending keeping their more fancied visitors at bay.

Ndega Matsika praised his boys for the three points which, however,  only slightly eases their relegation headache as they travel away to title favourites FC Platinum in their next match.

“We came into this game as underdogs and I congratulate my boys, they did very well. This match is now water under the bridge and we now need to go and face FC Platinum in their own backyard,” he said.

Magusha were ineffective in front of goal as they hardly created any other chances beyond the goal they scored as they concentrated on their defensive duties.

James Nguluve was one of the main culprits in Ngezi Platinum’s woeful attack as he wasted a number of gilt-edged chances.

Just past the hour mark he miscued his shot after a delightful cross from second half substitute Steven Owusu.

Magusha could even have added a second with 15 minutes to go when Liberty Chakoroma hacked down Tadzoka Viali inside the box only for referee Brighton Chimene to wave play on.

Mutare City had to soak in and survive a late onslaught from the visitors as they threw everything forward in search of an elusive equaliser that never came.