Mapeza heaps praise on his charges

By Mthokozisi Dube

FC Platinum asserted themselves as true champions after easing past Bulawayo giants Highlanders 3-2 in an entertaining match played at Barbourfields Stadium on Sunday.

The FC Platinum duel started with both sets of teams taking a cautious approach.

The home side was caught napping after former Highlanders player Brian Banda capitalised on a build-up resulting in him being fouled in the box.

Hwange-based referee Mhaka Magara rightly awarded the visitors a penalty and up stepped FC Platinum wonder boy Walter Musona who beat Bosso goal-minder Ariel Sibanda all systems out.

With some renewed vigour, Highlanders came an organised side in the second half, but Panashe Mutimbanyoka made no mistake to increase the tally, silencing fans from the Soweto end.

With Bosso down by two goals, there was a deafening silence at Emagumeni, only to be awakened when Stanley Ngala pulled one back.

Highlanders top goal-scorer Lynoth Chikuhwa justified his presence after coming in as a second-half substitute by heading home Bosso’s second on the stroke of 90 minutes, giving hope to the fans.

The celebrations were, however, cut short after Musona unleashed a grounder off a dead ball position to give FC Platinum the sweet three points.

After the game, FC Platinum head coach Norman Mapeza lauded his charges, particularly Brian Banda, describing the contest as one of the best this season.

“One of the best games this season, the boys did well, not only Brian Banda, but the majority of the boys were on top of the situation. It’s still a work in progress, we need to maintain the momentum. I was going to be equally happy if the match had ended a 2-2 stalemate,” he said.

For Highlanders technical manager Baltemer Brito, it was a painful defeat.

“We played a team that will be crowned champions. It’s hard to accept defeat but we take the blame as we hope to improve,” he said.

With a fourth successive league title beckoning, Mapeza says they are targeting to win the remaining matches as they endeavour to assert themselves as a football powerhouse.

The post Mapeza heaps praise on his charges appeared first on ZBC NEWS.

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