Mukudzei Chingwere, Harare Bureau
DEFENDING league champions FC Platinum will carry, at least, two sets of football boots per player for their top-of-the-table clash against joint log-leaders Ngezi Platinum Stars at Baobab tomorrow.
Some teams in the elite division have complained that Ngezi have a way of watering their pitch ahead of matches and making life difficult for visiting sides.
FC Platinum will be hoping to be the first team to come with all set of points from Mhondoro since How Mine’s 2-0 victory there on August 13 2016.
Coach Norman Mapeza seems to have done their research on their opponent and are going out of his way to tame the Baobab jungle.
“Everywhere in the world they tend to use their home advantage and I think with Ngezi they are using their home advantage very well,’’ said Mapeza.
‘’The most important thing is to go there with a positive mind and try to get a positive result.
“I think for them watering the pitch is not giving any club a disadvantage.
“We just need to go there prepared, everybody knows the pitch will be a little bit muddy, let us go out there prepared for that.
“We need to go there with proper boots and see what happens, go there with proper boots if you go without proper boots you are bound to fall down because the pitch is slippery.
“I will talk to the boys.’’
Mapeza said conditions were different everywhere they play.
‘’I think I have spoken about it before when we go for an away match we need to carry at least two pairs of football boots because you never know the condition of pitches in Zimbabwe,’’ he said.
“We are not allowed to go and inspect the pitch before the game, the only time we can go there is maybe when we go for warm-up.
“So I have spoken to the boys that we need to go there with, at least, two pairs of boots, one a multi-study and maybe the other one a mixed one.’’
Mapeza, however, downplayed the significance of their top-of-the-table clash saying whoever wins will not have the destiny of the league title in their hands.
Ngezi Platinum gaffer Tonderayi Ndirayi will need to find a formula to replace some of his star players like top-scorer Terrence Dzvukamanja and goalkeeper Bernard Donovan who are out of this tie.
Tomorrow: Nichrut v Triangle United (Ascot), Chicken Inn v Herentals (Luveve), ZPC Kariba v Harare City (Nyamhunga), Caps United v Bulawayo City (NSS), Ngezi Platinum Stars v FC Platinum (Baobab).
Sunday: Mutare City Rovers v Dynamos (Vengere), Shabanie Mine v Black Rhinos (Maglas), Highlanders v Bulawayo Chiefs (Barbourfields), Yadah v Chapungu (NSS).