FC PLATINUM gaffer Norman Mapeza (pictured) is relieved after title rivals Ngezi Platinum fell at the hands of Bulawayo City at the weekend.
BY TERRY MADYAUTA
The Platinum miners were given some breathing space after Ngezi lost to the beleaguered Bulawayo side, a result that helped them restore their healthy five-point lead following a mid-week glitch at the hands of Triangle.
With five games remaining before the curtain comes down, the defending champions are edging closer towards landing a second successive title.
After completing a double over ailing Harare giants Dynamos, Mapeza admitted that there was significant pressure on his side, but he ascertained that they would succeed in their title defence.
“The guys responded very well after dropping points during the mid-week. We only need to remain focused and work hard.
“Like I always say, focus is key. In football, and everyone operates with objectives, some can be achieved and some will not be achieved. We are still moving towards that objective of winning the title, but it’s not concluded yet.
“I don’t want to be talking about how others play, because we are running our own race and so far we are well in line with that objective,” he said.
Mapeza also took time to shower praise on Rodwell Chinyengetere who has been enjoying a good spell, as he scored in FC Platinum’s last five assignments.
“His is my player and I know my player. He is a quality player. I would not want to give too much praise on him, but you are the ones that watch him play and I think you have seen it. He has been pushing us for the last five games or so.
“But at the end of the day, it’s not about him alone, but the team matters more than a single player,” said Mapeza.
Chinyengetere’s goal tally rose to 15, after the weekend and could easily surpass Dominic Chungwa’s last season record of 16 goals if he maintains the current goal-scoring form.
The miners now have 65 points on their tally and with five assignments left against Nichrut, Shabanie Mine, Chicken Inn, Ngezi Platinum and Highlanders, they look poised to surpass the 72-point mark which they reached last season.