FC Platinum on revenge mission

Mapeza is in buoyant mood, with hopes of inflicting more misery on the already limping Mhondoro-Ngezi side.

BY TERRY MADYAUTA FC Platinum gaffer Norman Mapeza is hoping that his side can get one over Ngezi Platinum Stars when they collide in the blockbuster Platinum derby at Baobab Stadium tomorrow.

Mapeza is in buoyant mood, with hopes of inflicting more misery on the already limping Mhondoro-Ngezi side.

The first leg ended 1-0 in Ngezi’s favour; however, a lot has changed since that day, with the defending champions hitting top gears to dominate the league after going for eleven matches without a defeat.

They sit pretty at the summit of the log standings with a five point cushion ahead of their closest rivals, Dynamos, while Ngezi Platinum have been a pale shadow of themselves.

Ngezi got rid of Benjani Mwaruwari to give reigns to Takesure Chiragwi in the coaching set-up, but he too has struggled to steady the ship having lost the last two matches.

And Mapeza is hoping to capitalise on their woes, although he is approaching the match with caution.

“First of all I am more than happy with the preparations and with the attitude of the guys. It’s not going be any easy game especially that we lost the first leg at home despite us playing well on that day, we ended up on the losing side,” he said.

“We are facing a difficult team, they are coming from two losses, but that won’t make it easy for us. But the important thing is going there with the same hunger for success and be organised in terms of how we are going to attack and defend.”

Without a doubt, his youthful players have gathered confidence following a rather slow start to the season.

Against Tenax in the Chibuku Super Cup, Mapeza introduced two 18-year-olds, Tatenda Jamu and Tubelihle Ndlovu, who gave a decent account of themselves.

However, Mapeza singled out Oscar Bhebhe, who he believes is the next best thing in their title defence.

“It’s a project we have here as a club and it’s my job to train these boys and give them opportunities if any occasion arises. They came in and did well although it was just a few minutes. I was happy with Oscar Bhebhe’s performance. He played well, so I will keep giving them time depending on the matches we play but if we keep progressing in this Chibuku Super Cup tournament, they will get more time even in some of the league games,” he added.

Meanwhile, Mapeza will miss the services of Innocent Mucheneka, Nigel Makumbe and Gift Mbweti who are injured.

Donald Teguru has since been ruled out for the rest of the season after rapturing his Achilles tendon.

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