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FC Platinum keep title hopes alive

by Staff reporter
30 Oct 2016 at 10:44hrs | Views

Chapungu  0 - 2 FC Platinum
A SECOND half surge by FC Platinum kept the Zvishavane outfit's title hopes alive when they dismissed a stubborn Chapungu in a tough Premier Soccer league encounter at Ascot Stadium.

The visitors capitalised on two schoolboy blunders by Blessed Mbavarira and goalkeeper Roy Mazingi in the second half much to the disgruntlement of Chapungu. Chapungu are still not safe as the magic number is 34 and the Airforce side has 31 points and have two tough assignments as they have to travel to Hwange before hosting log leaders Caps United in their last game of the season .

A 48th minute strike by Tarisai Rukanda and a 75th minute goal by Walter Musona is all that FC Platinum needed to seal their win and keep their title hopes alive as they are two points adrift of log leaders Caps United.

The win, which is the Pure Platinum Play boys' first at Ascot since their inception into the top flight in 2011, saw them leap to second position after Bulawayo giants Highlanders stumbled 2-1 to relegation threatened Tsholotsho. FC Platinum made their presence felt as early as the third minute when lanky forward Marshal Mudehwe flighted a cross into the box to find an unmarked Walter Musona but he fluffed his chance and headed over the bar.

Chapungu refused to be outdone and they almost got an opener in the 18th minute when veteran striker Philip Marufu weaved past FC Platinum defence and squared to Agrippa Peperere who failed to tap home albeit being unmarked in the box.

Waru Waru dominated the entire first half controlling the midfield picking up all loose balls but their superior ball possession failed to yield results as they fluffed many chances infront of goal prompting coach John Nyikadzino to make an early substitution bringing in nomadic striker Allen Tavarwisa for an out of form Simon Maengeni.

However, tables were turned in the second half with FC Platinum upping their game attacking from all flanks with Musona and Mudehwe intermittently switching positions keeping the Chapungu defence on its toes.

The Musona, Mudehwe combination did not take long to yield results as Mudehwe robbed Chapungu right back Johnson Mabhugu of the ball and squared to Tarisai Rukanda who curled the ball into the top left corner beating a diving Mazingi.

The visitors kept on probing their opponents and got their second in the 75 minute when Mazingi fumbled a cross by Ian Nekati and Musona tapped into an empty net. A seemingly dejected Nyikadzino conceded that his charges lost concentration in the second half and made two schoolboy blunders that cost them.

"Without taking anything away from FC Platinum we gifted them with soft goals. They really played well but the first goal was a blunder from a defender and the second from the goalkeeper. We failed to defend well and also utilise the chances we had in the first half," he said.

FC Platinum gaffer Norman Mapeza said he was still hopeful that the will be crowned champions by the end of the season.

"Many people had written us off but we came here looking for a positive result and I am glad we got it. I wasn't really concerned about the score line but just wanted a win. We are still in the hunt for the league and cup double. Everything is possible for us we just need to remain focused," he said.

Source - online