FC Platinum’s walk of faith
. . . as champions eye Caf Confed group stage
FC PLATINUM coach Norman Mapeza reckons they have done their homework and are confident of turning the tables when they face Senegalese side ASC Jaraaf today in a Caf Confederation Cup second leg final playoff qualifier at Lat Dior Stadium.
The match kicks off at 6pm. Zimbabwe champions suffered a disappointing 0-1 first leg defeat against the West Africans at the National Sports Stadium in the first leg. This was a match they dominated only to miss a glut of chances including a first half penalty that was missed by the usually reliable midfielder Silas Songani.
The dreadlocked star saw his effort saved by ASC Jaraaf goalkeeper Pape Ndiaye. And for them to progress to
the group stages of the tournament, Mapeza’s charges will have to score two unanswered goals, something he still feels is possible and within their distance despite playing away from home. “The boys are looking great, they are doing well in the training sessions we have had so far.
“Our main objective still remains the same — to get to the Confederation Cup groups stages,” Mapeza told the Daily News on Sunday. “We know the challenges ahead but we have to remain positive because in football anything
can happen. The boys are in good shape and ready to correct the errors we made in the first leg. It’s obviously not going to be easy.
“A lot will be required from both the players and the technical team for us to secure the required results.” The Zimbabwean champions arrived in Senegal on Wednesday having endured a 15-hour flight and wasted little time conducting training sessions whilst acclimatising to the humid conditions in Thiès, just outside the capital Dakar where the match is being played.
Pure Platinum Play dropped to the Confederation Cup after crashing out of the Champions League in the second round at the hands of Tanzanian champions Simba SC. The Zimbabwean champions posted a narrow 1-0 win at home and went to Tanzania fighting for at least a draw but were given a rude awakening after they were walloped 4 0 albeit under controversial circumstances.
FC Platinum’s new boy Donald Teguru is equally confident of the team’s chances to progress to the next round. “Looking at how we played in the last game and the chances we spurned, it was sad, It is now up to us to pick ourselfs up and get a good result on Sunday,” he said.
“It is going to be a different ball game. I know a lot of people have ruled us out and even our opponents. “But in reality I think we stand a chance. All I can say for now is that as a team we have had self introspection and told each other the truth and we are more motivated than before.”