BY TERRY MADYAUTA
FC Platinum…………………(1) 1
Manica Diamonds………..(0) 0
A DEPLETED FC Platinum outfit put up a performance full of passion, belief and determination to beat Manica Diamonds 1-0 in a Castle Lager Premier Soccer League encounter played at Mandava Stadium yesterday.
Cameroonian Albert Eonde scored the solitary goal that helped the defending champions maintain their lead on the summit of the PSL standings with 27 points.
The scoreline was remarkable enough in itself, but the fact that FC Platinum outmuscled Manica Diamonds without two-thirds of their usual squad made it
The Norman Mapeza-coached side could not meet the mandatory seven-man bench, as they missed nine players including Raphael Muduviwa, Ali Sadiki and William
Stima, who are injured. The Moyo twins, Kelvin and Elvis, are reportedly away on trials at South African side Chippa United.
Devon Chafa and goalie Petros Mhari were on the FC Platinum bench.
Veteran forward Mkhokheli Dube was not available so was Lawrence Mhlanga, who is suspended after accumulating a red card in their last encounter.
Godknows Murwira, who is said to be trying to force his way out of the platinum miners, was not included in the team.
However, yesterday Eonde’s hunger to affirm FC Platinum as the best in the country was evident when he almost single-handedly quashed the Diamond Miners when
he brilliantly nodded home a seemingly harmless cross whipped in by Gift Mbweti exactly on the tenth minute mark.
Manica Diamonds tried hard to come back, but the platinum miners clung to their solitary goal which was all they needed to bag maximum points.
In his post-match comments, Norman Mapeza heaped praise on his team’s fighting spirit.
“Today we did not have numbers but before the game, I told my players that today is not about our technical abilities but it’s about our hearts,” he said.
“It’s indeed a massive result for us, the boys played well. There was coherence between the midfield and defence. Lameck Nhamo worked very hard and I really
want to applaud everyone for a brave show today.”
His counterpart Luke Masomere was disappointed with the result.
“I am disappointed with the result, but there are a number of contributing factors to this loss which I would not want to talk about today,” said Masomere.