FC Platinum coach Norman Mapeza rested several of his regulars, including Castle Lager Premier League top scorer Rodwell Chinyengetere, against Highlanders in the final league game as he focused on the African Champions League assignment in Madagascar next week.
BY FORTUNE MBELE
Veteran forward Mkhokeli Dube, Kelvin Moyo and defender Gift Bello were some of the key players that did not play a part in the match, although the former was on the bench.
Still, Mapeza’s men managed to secure a point in a goalless draw to take their points tally to 78.
The miners went into the match looking for a win, which would have taken their points tally to a record 80.
However, Mapeza was still satisfied with the draw. He said although he wanted to win the match, he could not gauge the strength of his side ahead of the trip to Madagascar against local teams.
“It was a good game of football. We had possession in the first half, but not causing any problem for Highlanders.
“The second half was a little better. I wanted to win the game and had a lot of respect for my proponents,” he said.
Highlanders were the first to settle and threw everything at their opponents.
On the stroke of half time, a chance came for Highlanders, but Brian Banda sent his effort wide.
Four minutes after the break, FC Platinum’s Devon Chafa missed a sitter inside the penalty box after a defensive mix-up in the Highlanders defence and goalkeeper Ariel Sibanda heaved a sigh of relief.
Highlanders mentor Madinda Ndlovu said a draw was a fair result.
“In all fairness, it was a duplication of the first game that we played earlier; very exciting game from two teams that have good attacking acumen,” he said.
“It was fair result for both teams. What pleases me is that we saw total football from both sides.”
Highlanders: A Sibanda, M Phiri, M Ndlovu, A Mbeba, T Ndlovu (A Silla 69′), P Muduhwa, G Nyoni (T Sibanda 88′), B Banda, N Sianchali, D Khumalo (R Lunga 65′), T Makanda
FC Platinum: P Mhari, R Muduviwa, L Mhlanga, W Stima, E Moyo, W Mhango, D Chafa (N Tigere 54′), F Madhananga (K Madzongwe 68′), R Kutsanziria (M Mudehwe 82′), A Eonde, G Mbweti