Norman Mapeza threatens to quit
Herentals 1 – 0 FC Platinum
A FUMING Norman Mapeza issued a surprise threat to quit coaching after his FC Platinum side fell to bogey side Herentals at the National Sports Stadium yesterday.
Tino Benza’s 62nd minute breakaway goal was enough to give the Students maximum points.
But the match had a fiery ending after the FC Platinum players mobbed the referee, Lawrence Zimhondi in injury time.
They were clearly unhappy with the manner the referee had handled the match.
Mapeza had to swiftly intervene in the melee to calm his players who were threatening to manhandle the centreman.
The furious players were particularly incensed by Zimhondi’s decision to allow play to continue after Herentals midfielder Ali Maliselo intercepted the ball as FC Platinum defender Lawrence Mhlanga was positioning the ball to take a free kick.
After “stealing” the ball and with the static FC Platinum players expecting the referee to blow his whistle, Maliselo ran half the field and with only the keeper Petros Mhari to beat, he squared the ball to an unmarked Brighton Maruwa who inexplicably skied his effort from a meter out.
In a startling post-match interview, Mapeza expressed disappointment in the manner the match officials handled the match.
Throughout the game, Mapeza could be seen gesturing to the fourth official over every decision that went against his players.
“With the way I love football, some of these things are going to force me to quit football. It’s not worth it. I love football so much, I want to see these kids develop as footballers, but if the football is going to be like this like what we saw today, then why am I here? I would rather go home and rest. It’s better because we can’t continue like this,” Mapeza fumed.
“Someone gets hacked down two, three times in front of him (referee) and he leaves it. This is not football, guys let’s be honest.
“I know you have to do your job as journalists, but sometimes you have to write the truth about some of these things. If you don’t expose such things, we will be going nowhere. We have to helpeach other. You have an important role to play and expose these things. Is this what we are looking for in our football. Where are we going (with such officiating). Yes we lost, it’s a game of football and I accept that, but this is not it, it’s bad.
“I had to go and pacify the players because you could tell the emotions were too high. I had to calm them down because there were a few minutes remaining to the match. I told them to leave it and continue playing.”
With the defeat, FC Platinum missed the chance to go top of the log standings. They remain on sixth position with 11 points, three behind log leaders Highlanders who have a game in hand.
Herentals coach Mutiwekuziva was naturally happy that his team has beaten the defending champions again, having defeated them on this same fixture last season.
The victory took Herentals up to seventh position with 10 points.
In a balanced first half, both teams missed good opportunities with Benza and Godfrey Mukambi wasting opportunities for Herentals.
FC Platinum midfielder Brian Banda stung the hands of goalkeeper Takudzwa Chikosi with a fierce shot before Gift Bello headed over from a corner kick for the visitors.
FC Platinum upped the tempo in the second half and created a number of chances which they failed to utilise.
Juan Mutudza, playing against his former club, missed the best opportunity for Mapeza’s men when he failed to turn home a rebound after Chikosi had spilled a Walter Musona shot.
Against the run of play, Herentals took the lead when a Milton Chimedza pass from deep in midfield released Benza to go clear through on goal. The striker had ample time to round off Mhari before slotting the ball into an empty net.
Herentals: T Chikosi, B Majarira, T Benza, G Chinobva, Z Ruguchu, B Majarira (B Maruwa, 46′), I Benza (J Zhuwawo, 46′), P Chama, G Mukambi, W Kapumha, M Chimedza (A Maliselo, 78′)
FC Platinum: P Mhari, G Mbweti, L Mhlanga, G Bello, M Ngwenya, R Pavari, B Banda, J Mutudza (I Mucheneka, 72′), J Selemani (E Chikwende, 72′), W Musona, P Chikwende (T Ngwenya, 72′)
In other news-