Chiragwi unfazed by poor start

Monday’s 1-0 home win over last season’s league runners up Manica Diamonds was the defending champions’ first victory in four attempts.

NGEZI Platinum Stars coach Takesure Chiragwi is not losing sleep over his team’s slow start to their Castle Lager Premier Soccer League title defence.

Monday’s 1-0 home win over last season’s league runners up Manica Diamonds was the defending champions’ first victory in four attempts.

Claude Makopa’s first half goal, a header off a quality Qadr Amini cross, was also the team’s first league goal this term.

The Mhondoro-based side has won once, drawn twice and lost once in what has been a difficult start.

However, Chiragwi, who guided the team to their first ever league title last year, is not worried.

He believes the win over struggling Manica Diamonds who are anchoring the log standings, could prove a turning point for his team.

“The win was more important for us, which I'm hopeful has opened the doors for us,” Chiragwi said.

“What is important is how the team is performing despite the result. If you go on to get a result like this after performing well it shows you are in the right direction. The progression and performance of the team is getting better, so we are happy.”

Chiragwi was quick to dismiss the notion that pressure is mounting on him after the team’s floundering start, insisting that he is calm and happy with how the squad is progressing.

“In football you play to win so you can’t take away the fact that it (football) has pressure because you always want to win. It is not that kind of pressure because you don’t win some games, but football has got pressure. When you don’t win, you must accept the outcome and take the positive so that you can improve going forward. There is no pressure in terms of how we are playing what is important is to keep focus and see where we are getting short so that we improve going forward.”

He said he has seen a lot of positives in the first four games of the season, and even if results have not come their way in most of the games.

“I’m happy because these guys are putting more than 100% effort.

“I have to give them credit always. They are the stars of the movie, and they are the ones doing everything. As the technical team we are happy when you see players do exactly what you do at training in game situations. We are always satisfied (with their performance.”

Monday victory saw Ngezi move to 11th position with five points, five behind early pacesetters FC Platinum.

This weekend, the Chiragwi-coached side is away to GreenFuel looking to kick on from their last home victory.

Matchday five fixtures

Tomorrow: Arenel Movers v Bikita Minerals (Luveve), Fc Platinum v Caps United (Mandava), Zpc Kariba v Herentals (Nyamhunga), GreenFuel v Ngezi Platinum Stars (GreenFuel), Yadah v Simba Bhora (TBA).

Sunday: Manica Diamonds v Chicken Inn (Sakubva), Highlanders v Chegutu Pirates (Barbourfields), Hwange v TelOne (Colliery), Dynamos v Bulawayo Chiefs (TBA)

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