BY FORTUNE MBELE
NGEZI Platinum Stars coach Erol Akbay wants to chop and change things as he seeks the right combinations and formula that can help his side overcome high-riding Chicken Inn when the two teams clash in a Castle Lager Premier Soccer League match at Baobab Stadium on Good Friday.
The platinum miners have collected three points from as many matches while their opponents are one of the two sides with a perfect record this far.
Ngezi Platinum lost their first match 2-1 to Triangle at Gibbo after Barnabas Mushunje scored their only goal, but they came back from behind to beat newboys Mushowani Stars 2-1 courtesy of goals by James Nguluve and Donald Teguru at Baobab.
They fired blanks on Sunday when they fell to Hwange at the Colliery and Akbay is not pleased at all.
The Dutchman, who replaced Tonderai Ndiraya at Ngezi Platinum, yesterday said his boys were playing well, but he wants them to be sharper in front of goal.
“We had a good pre-season, but our last three games have not been that good. Our problem is that we are creating the chances, but not scoring. That is the biggest challenge. Our team is good, but we are lacking in attack where it matters most. We will see how we work on that this week. We will try and have positional changes and try other combinations so that we get goals. That is what we will be working on this week,” Akbay said.
Ironically, while his side struggles for goals, it is their former striker Clive Agusto who is finding the net for Chicken Inn.
Augusto is on fire and has scored in each game the Gamecocks have played so far this season, netting a brace when they beat ZPC Kariba 3-1 at Luveve in the first game and was also on target when they hammered Yadah FC 2-0 in Harare.
He also scored against Dynamos at the weekend and he will be looking to continue on this streak.
Former Ngezi goalkeeper Donovan Bernard was between the sticks on Saturday, while Tichaona Chipunza took his place at the base of the midfield.
Akbay and his assistants, Tendai Chikuni and Cosmas Zulu watched Chicken Inn beat Dynamos and he was impressed by Joey Antipas’ side.
“Chicken Inn are a good side with very good players and if we do not score, we will be in trouble,” Akbay said.
Another potentially exciting match on the cards will be at Mandava on Saturday where red-hot Hwange travel to take on champions FC Platinum.
Hwange have so far won all their three matches against Yadah, Dynamos and Ngezi Platinum, while the Zvishavane-based FC Platinum won their first two against Harare City (away) and Triangle (home) before being held by Mushowani in Harare on Monday.
Easter holiday fixtures
Friday: Yadah v TelOne (Rufaro), Bulawayo Chiefs v ZPC Kariba (Luveve), Ngezi Platinum v Chicken Inn (Baobab)
Saturday: Black Rhinos v Caps (Rufaro), FC Platinum v Hwange (Mandava)
Sunday: Chapungu v Harare City (Mandava)
Monday: Dynamos v Herentals (Rufaro), Manica Diamonds v Mushowani Stars (Gibbo), Highlanders v Triangle (Barbourfields)