Highlanders end 9-year misery

Bosso Vs FC Platinum

HIGHLANDERS . . . . . . . . . (2)2

FC PLATINUM . . . . . . . . . . (0)1

HIGHLANDERS put up a stellar first half performance to overcome FC Platinum for the first time in nine years in a fast-paced Castle Lager Premier Soccer League match at Barbourfields Stadium yesterday.

Stanley Ngala and Peter Muduhwa scored inside seven minutes of each goal in the first half for Highlanders to collect maximum points and hand FC Platinum their first defeat of the season.

FC Platinum defenders failed to deal with a loose ball lobbed from the centre in the 27th minute and Ngala took possession, scooping the ball past an advancing goalkeeper Wallace Magalane.

In the 34th minute, the Bulawayo giants' central defender Peter Muduhwa came to the end of a Archiford Faira corner-kick and made no mistake with a header to make it two for Highlanders.

Magalane had made earlier a brilliant save from a Ngala header off another Faira corner-kick.

FC Platinum got their consolation goal through Walter Musona who picked up a loose ball in the 51st minute and unleashed a cracker which was deflected back into his path and on the rebound beat goalkeeper Ariel Sibanda all systems out.

The Highlanders pair of Melikhaya Ncube and Darlington Mukuli stifled the visitors’ midfield and made sure their movement was curtailed in the first half.

The introduction of Innocent Mucheneka and Perfect Chikwende in the second half changed the complexion of the game for FC Platinum who threw everything at Highlanders, but could not get that all important equaliser.

Highlanders coach Baltemar Brito was happy with the three points.

“What is important now is to collect maximum points, no matter how. They (FC Platinum have quality players, they know how to play and they have an experienced coach. They scored in the second half and it looked like a comeback, but our boys were equal to the task,” Brito said.

For FC Platinum, Norman Mapeza said: “Life goes on. This is our third game of the season. I am happy my boys kept on playing and they did not panic.”

Highlanders got their first chance at goal in the 11th minute after Lynoth Chikuhwa was brought down on the edge of the penalty box, but the opportunity was wasted by Faira from a set-piece.

FC Platinum’s Misheck Ngwenya missed a sitter inside the box in the 15th minute after a cross from the right eluded Bosso defender Mbongeni Ndlovu.

Chikuhwa made a good run four minutes later, set up by Mukuli, but miscued his effort inside the box.

Two minutes before the final whistle, FC Platinum could have got the equaliser, but goalkeeper Sibanda made a brilliant save from a close range effort by Muchaneka.


Highlanders: A Sibanda, A Mbeba, A Faira,  M Ndlovu, P Muduhwa, M Ncube (Manhire 74'), L Chikuhwa, D Mukuli, S Ngala (M Chigumira 66'), D Mhindirira (G Makaruse 89'), M Mushore (W Navaya 74')

FC Platinum: W Magalane, G Mbweti, M Ngwenya, L Mhlanga, K Mangiza, B Banda,  H Magaya (I Mucheneka 53'), J Mutudza, P Mutimbanyoka (I Selemani 81'), W Musona, T Ngwenya (P Chikwende 53')

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