ZIMBABWE’S representatives in the Caf Confederation Cup FC Platinum would make a second trip to East Africa next month as they are likely to face
Young Africans of Tanzania in the second round of the 2015 competition.
BY WELLINGTON TONI
Platinum beat Kenya’s Sofapaka 2-1 at the Nyayo Stadium on Sunday and are set to finish off the church team in the return leg on February 28 at Mandava Stadium in Zvishavane.
Brian Muzondiwa and Donald Ngoma scored the crucial goals for Platinum.
On the other hand, Young Africans took a 2-0 lead against Botswana Defence Forces X1 in the first leg on Saturday and are on course to reach the next stage.
Young Africans got their goals courtesy of Amisisi Tambwe’s brace, and the two sides will meet for a second leg on February 27 at Lobatse Sports Complex.
Young Africans is one of the oldest football teams in East Africa having been established in 1935. The club has won Tanzania Premier League 24 times, Tanzania Cup 4 times and Cecafa cup 5 times.
Their home games are played at the 60 000-seater Benjamin Mkapa National Stadium.
It is one of the two biggest teams in Tanzanian football, their arch-rivals being Simba. Both teams are based in Dar es Salaam. The team’s colours are yellow, green and black.
Shabani Nonda is the most notable player to play for the club. He had a stint with Yanga in the middle of the 1990s before heading to Vaal Professionals based in South Africa and eventually Monaco in France.
Basically, this means Norman Mapeza’s men will need not worry about acclimatisation since the weather patterns are the same.
But he has to worry about the fans.
While Nyayo Stadium was basically empty, Young Africans attract no less than 30 000 fans at their home games, making any visitor feel intimidated.
Meanwhile, FC Platinum has paid tribute to the fans that watched their match in Nairobi on Sunday.
In a statement yesterday, FC Platinum said: “A big thank you to the Zimbabweans based in Kenya who came in their numbers through the invitation from the Foreign Affairs Ministry. We were deeply humbled by the support shown to the Team. Thank you again.”
Club president George Mawere, chairman Dumisani Sisale, secretary-general Benson Wirimai, treasurer Petros Ngorima, media liaison officer Chido Chizondo and Bulawayo businessman Worth Mugabe all travelled with the team.