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Bosso begin ZNA Charities Shield defence

by Staff reporter
12 Mar 2017 at 09:08hrs | Views


HIGHLANDERS set in motion their quest for a third consecutive Zimbabwe National Army Charities Shield when they meet FC Platinum in a rescheduled fixture at Luveve Stadium this afternoon.

The match was meant to have been played at Barbourfields Stadium on 26 February but it had to be postponed to today due to a waterlogged Emagumeni. With the facility still closed by the owners, Bulawayo City Council, the match will take place at Luveve Stadium.

Highlanders have won the two previous editions of the charity tournament with a 1-0 triumph over Dynamos at Rufaro in 2015 followed up by a 4-2 on penalties victory over Harare City in a match that had concluded 0-0 in 90 minutes at Barbourfields.

Last year, the two teams met at the semi-final stage of the same competition at Barbourfields with Bosso winning the match 4-3 on penalties in a match which had ended 1-1 in normal time. Bruce Kangwa and Walter Musona who were on target on that day have left for Tanzania and South Africa respectively.

Highlanders' coach Erol Akbay described today's clash as difficult while at the same time an exciting fixture. His intention is to field the strongest squad seeing that FC Platinum are a quality side.

"For us it is a difficult but exciting match, we hope to defend our cup, we are ready for the match. I think Platinum have a strong good team that makes it two good teams who want to play football, it makes it more exciting,'' said Akbay.

The Dutchman will not be able field two of his latest signings, Manuel Esono Obiang Buale and Tambwe Kalunga who are still to get their work permits. Striker Rodrick Mutuma, who showed some flashes of brilliance with his ability to keep the ball and not lose easily to the opposition in the international friendly against Power Dynamos of Zambia last Tuesday, is expected to lead the Highlanders hunt for goals with the aid of Prince Dube and Gabriel Nyoni.

Central defender Peter Muduhwa who was stretchered off with a knee injury on Tuesday has made good recovery and is available for selection. He should combine with Tendai Ndlovu in central defence while Honest Moyo and the impressive Bukhosi Ncube are certain to be the wing backs. The four are expected to provide good cover for Ariel Sibanda. Prosper Matutu, the Bosso second choice whose heroics in goals saw them beat Harare City is ruled out by a finger injury with Nedrick Madeya, promoted from Bosso 90 the available option should anything happen to Sibanda.

Skipper Erick Mudzingwa, his deputy Rahman Kutsanzira, Godfrey Makaruse, Simon Munawa, Brian Banda, Tendai Ngulube and Allen Gahadzikwa are the options for Akbay in midfield.

FC Platinum, despite the loss to Highlanders in the ZNA Charities Shield beat Bosso when it counted the most as they took all the six points at stake in the league fixtures between the two teams last season.They triumphed 2-1 at Barbourfields and 3-0 at Mandava to eliminate Highlanders from the championship race.

Petros Mhari, Winston Mhango, Charles Sibanda, Nqobizitha Masuku, Gerald Takwara, the Moyo twins, Elvis and Kelvin as well as Ian Nekati are some of the players Norman Mapeza will be counting upon to inflict further misery on Highlanders.

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