Platinum off to a flier

FC PLATINUM reminded their rivals they are not prepared to surrender the title they have won for the past two seasons with a dominant performance that put Harare City to the sword in a Castle Lager Premiership match here yesterday. 

The visitors’ dominance was evident from the first whistle as they bullied their opponents in almost every department and goals in each half from Ali Sadiki and defender Elvis Moyo ensured the reigning champions began their 2019 campaign on a positive note.

While Harare City were playing their first competitive match of the season, it was a different case with the platinum miners whose fitness levels were superior due to their participation in the African Champions League, where they were eliminated in the group stages of the tournament.

City coach Mark Harrison admitted at the final whistle that their opponents were better equipped going into the season opener.
“It was always going to be very difficult for us to play this game. I keep saying it, I said it before the game and I’m saying it now,” Harrison said.

“They were sharp and all over the field and quite rightly so because they have been playing competition football for the past three months in Caf.

“We are just coming out of pre-season, it always take you three or four games to get to where you need to be and this is the last game we needed to be playing against FC Platinum. But anyway, I think we did quite well, we had to manage the game because of the match fitness levels.”
FC Platinum coach Norman Mapeza lauded his charges for a job well done.

“I think it was a massive win. We always struggle when we come to Harare to face City. I think the last time we came and won was in 2014. Well done to the boys for the win,” said Mapeza.
While FC Platinum were the better side in the opening 20 minutes there were, however, few chances of any note with Harare City well organised and defending in numbers.

Former Bulawayo Chiefs forward Perfect Chikwende could have put FC Platinum ahead only to shoot weakly at City keeper Maxwell Nyamupanedengu after finding space inside the box.
Sadiki, however, deservedly put the visitors ahead with a beautiful finish at the far post after defender Ray Uchena had failed to clear Chikwende’s header from his path.

City defender Marshal Machazani had an opportunity to equalise for the home side on the stroke of halftime following a rare attack only to shoot tamely at goalkeeper Petros Mhari.

The Sunshine Boys came back a more charged side in the second half keeping the visitors on the back foot only to be let down by poor finishing from Martin Vengesai and Wilfred Muvirimi.
They were punished for those misses as Moyo secured the three points after a wonderful team move before finding space between Nyamupanedengu and his near post.   

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