Former Chippa United coach Norman Mapeza, who came close to joining Dstv Premiership side Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila, on Saturday guided FC Platinum to the first round of the Caf Champions League after beating Mozambique’s Costa do Sol 4-1 on aggregate.
Mapeza reunited with the platinum miners just a week before their preliminary round clash with the Mozambican giants after Dutch mentor Hendrik de Jongh was axed.
Mapeza led Pure Platinum Play to a 2-1 win in Maputo before finishing them off 2-0 in an empty stadium in Harare.
William Stima and Perfect Chikwende were on target for the Zvishavane outfit, who now meet Tanzanian giants Simba in the first round in a fortnight. Simba clung onto a goalless draw at home against Plateau United on Saturday after Clatous Chama’s solitary goal in Nigeria handed them a 1-0 win.
“This was the fast forward step we wanted to get in this match and now it is to be hoped that we play future matches with the same kind of attitude which we demonstrated. The team did well, and I think we could have won this match with a wider margin, but the end result is satisfactory, and we hope to keep this fire ablaze,” said Mapeza, pictured below.
The winner between the two will qualify for the group stage of Africa’s premier inter-club competition. The first leg will be played on December 22 and the return match on January 5, 2021.
It was FC Platinum’s eighth win in 28 Caf Champions League matches since 2012, when they made their debut with a preliminary round win over Green Mamba of Eswatini.
They have gone on to qualify for the group stage on three occasions and are now on the cusp of a fourth consecutive appearance in the lucrative Champions League phase.
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By FARPost Reporter