BY TERRY MADYAUTA
FC Platinum gaffer Norman Mapeza is targeting a jumpstart to the 2019 Castle Lager Premier Soccer League season as his side begin their title defence with a tough encounter against Harare City this afternoon at Rufaro Stadium.
The reigning champions are in fine fettle as they have been in action for the last three months, in which they have been taking part in the Caf Champions League.
Though they did not get favourable outcomes, Mapeza reckons that his side is mentally prepared to maintain their dominance on the local front.
Their last visit to Harare City ended in a 1-0 defeat.The veteran gaffer, however, is not reading much into their previous performances, as he hopes for a confidence-boosting victory away from home.
“We are the ones who are going to kick-off the 2019 season. It’s a massive game for us as a club and it’s very important for us as an institution to start this journey on a positive note.
“It is our first game of the season, and I don’t think we have gathered much information about our opponents, so we don’t know much about how they are playing.
“But this is a game of football. We have done a lot in terms of our preparations and we just hope the guys will go there and put up a good performance.
“Like I always say, we play to win our games so I know the best team of the day will win the match,” Mapeza said.
However, the platinum miners will be without the services of Godknows Murwira who is recovering after sustaining a knee injury in the Warriors camp last week.
On the other hand, Harare City coach Mark Harrison will be looking to collect his first set of maximum points against the defending champions.
The Briton has assembled what looks like a formidable squad, but this afternoon they will have to be at their penetrative best as they take on a side that is renowned for its defensive stealth.