Mapeza, Magalane honoured

16 Aug, 2022 - 00:08 0 Views
Mapeza, Magalane honoured Norman Mapeza

The Herald

Grace ChingomaSenior Sports Reporter

FC Platinum gaffer Norman Mapeza and his goalkeeper Wallace Magalane were voted the Castle Lager Premier Soccer League’s Coach and Player of the Month for July respectively. 

It was Mapeza’s second monthly award after he was first named Coach of the Month for May while it is the first time for the long-time understudy of Petros Mhari, Magalane, to pick the Player of the Month award. He was finally rewarded after going for 10 games without conceding a goal. 

FC Platinum have gone for 11 games unbeaten and their last defeat was back on April 30 when they lost 1-0 to Herentals at the National Sports Stadium. 

Since that defeat, Mapeza relegated his veteran skipper Mhari to the bench with Magalane coming in as his first-choice goalkeeper and he has never looked back.

The reigning Premiership champions are enjoying a six-point lead over second-placed Dynamos in the league with 10 rounds of matches to go before the season comes to an end. 

In the period under review, the Pure Platinum Boys beat Harare City 2-0 away in Harare, they edged ZPC Kariba 1-0 at Mandava.

The Zvishavane side had a goalless draw against Dynamos and before that, they beat Bulawayo Chiefs 1-0. The pacesetters also did themselves a huge favour when they also beat rivals and title-chasing Chicken Inn 3-0 at the start of that month.

Yesterday, Magalane attributed his success to the team’s effort. 

Interestingly, he conceded his first goal on Saturday when FC Platinum were held to a 1-1 draw by Black Rhinos. 

“I would like to thank everyone who recognised my work and voted for me. It is motivating and going forward, it gives me the confidence to do more and work harder at training. 

“My performance is due to the team’s effort. I know it rarely happens for someone to go for so long without conceding but I give glory to the Lord,” said Magalane. 

“I conceded on Saturday, it is part of the game but to be honest, I had this feeling and I really felt something strong for conceding that goal. I was used to keeping clean sheets,” he said. 

The 28-year-old goalkeeper, who had vowed not to concede any goal this season, says he is still aiming to keep clean sheets in at least eight more games from the 10 rounds of matches left. 

“We still have 10 games in the league and although we are leading, anything can happen in the remaining games. My target is to have eight more clean sheets,” said Magalane. 

Chicken Inn coach, Joey Antipas, has the highest number of monthly awards. So far he has picked four monthly awards winning in February, March, April and June awards.

However, the Gamecocks’ inconsistent run is costing the team which has slipped to third position with the same number of points as Dynamos. 

In July, Antipas and his charges managed a single win in five games. They beat Bulawayo Chiefs 3-0. That victory was sandwiched with defeats against Tenax, FC Platinum and DeMbare. They were also held by ZPC Kariba to sum up a tough period for the former champions. 

At the weekend, Chicken Inn bounced back to their winning ways with a 1-0 victory against struggling Harare City at the National Sports Stadium.

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