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norman mapeza

STERN TEST FOR MAPEZA

HARARE – FC Platinum, who are bidding to snatch the title under the noses of Chicken Inn, face a real examination of their title credential when they host resurgent CAPS United in a Castle Lager Premiership tie at Mandava Stadium tomorrow.

The platinum miners, who are sitting second on the log table, trailing log leaders Chicken Inn by two points, are still fancying their chances with two matches left before the season ends.

And they have a huge opportunity to lay claim to their title ambitions by righting their Wednesday wrongs which cost them the chance of dislodging Chicken Inn.

Norman Mapeza’s charges blew a golden chance of moving to the top of the table when they were held to a 1-1 draw by struggling Flame Lily at Lafarge Stadium on Wednesday.

Tomorrow, FC Platinum face a resurgent CAPS United in a potentially explosive penultimate match of the season and Mapeza is wary of the threat posed by the Green Machine.

In recent seasons, Makepekepe have proved a real stumbling block to teams chasing the title, with Harare City and ZRP Kariba falling victims in 2013 and 2014 seasons, respectively.

“It’s a massive game!” declared Mapeza.

“The most important thing for us is to stay focused. There are still six points to play for. It’s still game on. It’s a challenge. But as a coach we desire to be in such situations.”

He added that his team which let go six players during the transfer window, never imagined they would be in the position they are and it would be senseless for him to criticise his charges.

“If you check the position we were at the first half of the season and where we are now, it shows you we have come a long way. So I am happy. It would be stupid of me if I don’t appreciate.  I am not worried about Chicken Inn or Dynamos I am just concentrating on my team,” he said.

CAPS United’s impressive run since Lloyd Chitembwe rejoined the Harare giants just over a month ago has brought many at the club a lot of praise.

And Chitembwe said he is eager to maintain the good form.

“It’s going to be a massive match for both CAPS United and FC Platinum. For Platinum, probably it’s more important because they have prospects of winning the league,” Chitembwe said.

“For us, we want to try and maintain our integrity. So, I think there is a lot to play for on both sides. We want the three points, we always play to win and we are looking forward to the game.”

Fixtures:

Tomorrow: Chicken Inn FC v Harare City (Luveve Stadium, SS), FC Platinum v CAPS United (Mandava Stadium), ZPC Kariba v Hwange (Nyamhunga Stadium), Dynamos v Chapungu (Rufaro Stadium)

Sunday: How Mine v Dongo Sawmill (Luveve Stadium), Highlanders v Tsholotsho (Barbourfields Stadium SS), Whawha v Flame Lily (Ascot Stadium), Triangle United v Buffaloes (Gibbo Stadium)

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