Zimbabwe football news.
By Milton Mashasha.
Highlanders FC…………….(0) 1
FC Platinum…………………(1) 2
Harare, Zimbabwe. (News of The South) – A school boy blunder by the Highlanders FC centre back Tendai Ndlovu in the 51st minute handed over FC Platinum a 2-1 victory over the host in a match played at Barbourfields stadium on Sunday the 10th of April.A good crowd came to watch the match despite the chilly weather with some drizzles in other parts of the country.
When ever these two teams meet,fans expect nothing but totally football.As usual the teams did not disappoint the crowd that thronged the stadium to witness the epic battle between the two teams.It was FC Platinum who toyed around with the ball,passing the ball forcing the Highlanders FC players to fight for possession.FC Platinum dominated possession but Highlanders FC denied to be intimidated, they maintained the stance to contain pressure showing some brilliance as they tried to match the platinum miners standard.
The FC Platinum midfield that comprised of Winston Mhango their dependable defence linkman,creative midfiellders Nqobizitha Masuku,Tatenda Dzumbunu and their wing attackers Hillary Bakacheza and Elvis Moyo gave Highlanders FC midfield a torrid time.
They gave their opponent no chance,they were always first on the ball,passing the ball around with precision and creating scoring chances for their front runners Obrey Chirwa and Walter Musona.
The Bosso midfield that included Simon Munawa in the anchorman position,with King Nadolo,Rahman Kutsanzira and Bruce Kangwa failed to match the mobile and steady FC Platinum midfield though they gave good account of themselves.Moreso the platinum miners defence that comprised of Ian Nekati,Gift Bello and Kelvin Moyo was very solid.Whilst the Bosso back four was sometimes found wanting,especially in the left back position where there was Honest Moyo who had a torid time the whole afternoon before he was substituted.It was a highway for the speedy merchant FC Platinum winger Hillary Bakacheza who was using his dribbling skills and pace leaving Moyo standing akimbo at times.
The deadlocked Highlanders skipper Felix Chidungwe led by example he never put his foot wrong,shating most dangerous raids by the visitors.The new boy Benson Phiri also stood his ground on the right back position,he was rock solid never gave the ball away on a silver plata.
It was FC Platinum who drew first blood after the ball was flighted in the Bosso 18 area and eluded their defenders, an alert Bakacheza opened fire inside the penalty box but the ball hit the upright post and bounced back into play then an unmarked Walter Musona took the second chance to beat Aerial Sibanda from close range to give FC Platinum the lead in the 23rd minute.
In the second half Obrey Chirwa increased the tally to 2-0 in the 51st minute after the Highlanders FC defender Tendai Ndlovu made a mistake by turning into his goal area instead of clearing the ball to safety he slipped on the process and he was robbed off the ball by Chirwa who raced towards the goal before unleashing a raising shot to beat an exposed goalkeeper Aerial Sibanda all systems out.
Highlanders FC players continued to play their normal game despite trailing by two (2) goals.They played well especially in the second half with their coach Erol Akbay barking instructions from the touch line. Erol pulled out Honest Moyo and introduced a midfielder Adrian Silla and also the injured King Nadolo was replaced by Danmore Chakwana.Bosso began to dectate the pace forcing FC Platinum to back peddle.
It was Rahman Kutsanzira who pulled one back in the 65 minute to make it 2-1 reducing the arrears. There was an exchange of passes between Knox and Rahman before the latter beating Petros Mhari in goals for FC Platinum.
The FC Platinum gaffer Norman Mapeza sensed danger and he introduced defence minded players to avert the pressure from Highlanders FC.He introduced Gerald Takwara for Dzumbunu who was yellow carded earlier by the nonosense Gwanda based referee Nkosana Nduna.Simon Shoko came in for Masuku and Rodwell Chinyengetere for Hillary Bakacheza.
Highlanders FC tried to force for an equaliser but FC Platinum stood their ground.They defended their goal area well thwàrting all raids which were made by the black and white army led by Prince and Knox in attack.The two strikers failed to utilise the half chances that came on their way.They seemed to be off form.They looked jittery and nervous when ever they were in possession.It was a bad day in the office for the young Prince Dube and the slippery foward Knox Mutizwa.The match ended 2-1 in favour of the platinum miners.
It was back to the drawing board for Erol Akbay.Although his boys played well despite the loss. Sometimes in the game of soccer the result does not matter especially when the team is on a rebuilding phase.Highlanders FC and FC Platinum gave the fans an account of their money.They played entertaining football.The fans were very excited regardless of the result.
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