No regrets for Mapeza
FC PLATINUM coach Norman Mapeza has described the club’s final squad for the Champions League as the best the Zvishavane miners could have assembled.
The Premiership kings made adjustments to the squad they submitted to the Confederation of African Football in time for yesterday’s deadline.
Mapeza’s men sent in a revised 27-man list that took into account the fact that they had failed to secure the services of such players as midfielders Liberty Chakoroma, who elected to stay on at Ngezi Platinum and Nqobizitha Masuku, who is moving to Zambia.
FC Platinum also secured the signature of Harare City’s versatile midfielder Farai Madhanhanga.
The Zimbabwean Champions play Deportivo Primero de Agosto of Angola away in the preliminary round on the weekend of February 9-11.
Madhanhanga, a member of Callisto Pasuwa’s CHAN squad that featured at the Rwanda tournament in 2016, can play as left back and in midfield and it is that versatility that charmed Mapeza, who apparently had only one recognised left back, Elvis Moyo.
The two-time championship winning coach thanked his executive for bringing in the players he wanted, saying the onus was on his charges to work hard and achieve their objectives.
“We just added a few guys to the squad to have depth in all departments.
“I am more than happy and I do believe we can reach our set objectives. No regrets at all. We just need to keep working hard like before. Many thanks to the club bosses for bringing in all players we wanted this coming season,” said Mapeza.
Zimbabwe’s sole representative in the African Safari chose to fill 27 of the mandated 30 slots, but they will not be allowed to further alter their squad until they have reached the group stages.
In order to reach that lucrative stage, FC Platinum would have to go past the opening two rounds. From their initial 28-man squad they submitted to CAF on December 31, they have removed Chakoroma and Masuku, who has since left the country to join Zambian Premier League side Buildcon.
Despite still having space to add more players, FC Platinum chose to wield the axe on 2017 non-performers like Takesure Chinyama, who failed to live up to his big reputation.
FC Platinum are currently camped in Bulawayo for their pre-season programme, where they will be based for three weeks. During their stay in Bulawayo, FC Platinum are looking at playing some international friendly matches.
Meanwhile, FC Platinum are confidently waiting that CAF will give them the greenlight to use Mandava when they begin their Champions League campaign next month.
CAF stadium inspector Kabelo Doslong of South Africa was in Zvishavane over the weekend, where he ran the rule over Mandava.
The CAF inspector also took a look at the venues which the miners have listed as accommodation sites for visiting teams and match officials.
FC Platinum have listed Pote Hotel and Runde Lodge to see if the facilities qualify to host continental matches and teams.