HARARE – FC Platinum coach Norman Mapeza reckons the best is still to come from his youthful brigade after winning the Chibuku Super Cup on Sunday.
The platinum miners beat Harare City 3-1 on penalties to bag their first piece of major silverware since they were promoted into the top flight back in 2011.
And in addition to a ticket to represent the country in at the Africa Confederation Cup next year, FC Platinum pocketed $75 000 winners’ cheque while City went home $50 000 richer.
However, the former Warriors coach believes his side still has a lot to offer.
“The best is yet to come from us, I was away from football for more than two years but when I came back I have returned with a bang,” he said.
“I didn’t promise anything when I came to Platinum but things are just falling in place because of the grace of the Lord.
“The win in the Chibuku Cup is a testimony of hard work because we continued believing even when we were a goal down.
“We are now looking ahead to the Mbada Diamonds Cup. I also give credit to the players, executive and the fans for fighting for a common cause.”
Platinum needed a controversial late equaliser in stoppage time from Walter Musona to deny Harare City the win and force the match into extra time before they sealed it on penalties.
With Harare City officials in the VIP enclosure up on the feet preparing for coronation time, controversial referee Norman Matemera awarded Platinum a free kick on the left side.
Thabani Kamusoko sent in a cross which was cleared by the impressive David Kutyauripo.
Matemera did not signal a goal but waited for his far assistant Abraham Manda who was also hesitant before pointing to the centre for a goal.
The goal frustrated Harare City players killing the fighting spirit in them allowing Platinum to dictate the pace in the extra time.
Harare City coach Masimba Dinyero was not happy with the way Matemera handled the match.
“We played well but the referee had other ideas,” Dinyero said after the match.
“We lost not because we played badly but the referee had his own input”
Matemera was also at the centre of controversy last year when he allowed Dynamos to score an equaliser against Highlanders way after added time had elapsed.
Many have questioned why the final was staged at Mandava where most PSL clubs have accused FC Platinum of getting preferential treatment from the match officials.
Just last weekend Hwange coach Nation Dube was not happy with the way match officials handled their league match in which they lost 0-1 at the Colliery.
Despite the controversy surrounding the Platinum equaliser the match lived up to its billing as a cup finalwith Harare City who are fighting relegation tearing away the form book dominating proceedings for the better part of regulation time.
The win saw Platinum continued with their unbeaten run since the league defeat to Highlanders way back in August with their goalkeeper Petros Mhari conceding his first goal since August after he was beaten by Talent Chawapiwa.