|Mandava Stadium nearly complete|
|Wednesday, 25 January 2012 00:00|
FC Platinum are working flat out renovating and expanding Mandava Stadium. The platinum miners are upgrading the stadium into a first class facility that is expected to pass the Caf test in February. They are participating in the Champions League after finishing second in the Castle Lager Premiership. The team was drawn against Swaziland's Green Mambas in the preliminary round and their first match on home turf is expected to be in the opening weekend of March.
This would be after the away match on 16-18 February.
The eastern bay and the VIP tribune on the western side of the stadium have already been demolished and workers are busy working on erecting new stands that will have bucket seats fitted when all work has been completed.
The VVIP tribune had bucket seats fitted last season.
"We are working on the stadium and we are almost through. The stadium should be ready by the first week of February," said Philemon Muvengwa, the secretary-general for the club.
The pitch is already in excellent shape.
The turnstiles and the rest rooms are being demolished with new ones being built at the western side that houses the VVIP and VIP arena. The commentary box and the media centre will soon be functional.
He said the place would soon be the best place to be in the country and would be ideal for national team games.
The mining giant clinched an agreement with Zvishavane Town Council to lease the ground for a number of years and have so far constructed structures that will benefit the community of Zvishavane.
FC Platinum have emulated Shabanie Mine who played against St Michel of the Seychelles in 2002 in the then Africa Cup Winners Cup.
Shabanie refurbished Maglas Stadium and passed the CAF test although they failed it to make it to the second round. FC Platinum are expected to go a step further and bring smiles to Zvishavane fans as they have a quality squad.
FC Platinum yesterday dismissed speculation that they had hired Lloyd Chitembwe to be among its team of spies ahead of the Champions League campaign.
"Chitembwe has not joined us. People are just speculating. We have not even added any new players except the ones we registered to take part in the CAF competition."
"As a club we are very happy with our preparations and I think we will gauge our strength in our first competitive match to be played on Saturday," said Muvengwa.
FC Platinum is one of the teams to watch this season after finishing second to Dynamos last season.
Meanwhile, the team returned from their camp in Kariba at the weekend and started training yesterday in preparation for the Bob 88 semi-final against Motor Action in Mutare on Saturday.