Sikhumbuzo Moyo, Senior Sports Reporter
FC PLATINUM executive has assured head coach Norman Mapeza that his job is safe despite being knocked out of the Total Caf Champions League in the preliminary round stage by Angola’s Clube de Agosto this week.
Pure Platinum were humbled 5-1 on aggregate by the Angolans following a 0-3 first leg defeat before succumbing to a 1-2 home loss on Wednesday.
The club executive said there is no need to wield the axe on their coach as they believe he is still learning given that it was his debut in the Caf Champions League as a coach.
In an interview after the Wednesday defeat, FC Platinum chairman Evans Mthombeni said there was never a time when Mapeza’s job was not safe.
“This is his second game in terms of the Caf Champions League and for you to perform at this level you also need exposure. It was a learning curve for everyone. This tournament was more demanding than the Premier League so I wouldn’t want to say there was a time his job was not safe. Look, he won the local premiership and just in December, he lifted the Castle Cup, so we believe there is a lot that he can still give us. There is nothing like his job is not safe or something like that,” said Mthombeni.
He reiterated that the ‘schooling’ which the Angolans gave them was for everyone from the executive, the coaches and the players.
“Our target as a club was to reach the group stage of the Total Caf Champions League and we believe the guys did well despite being knocked out and as a club this has been a learning curve for us, for the players and also for the coach,” he said.
Mapeza also gave credit to his players despite the loss.
“We did our best we just have to give credit to the boys, I think they worked very hard,” said Mapeza in his post match interview on Wednesday.
Their focus now is on the domestic season which gets underway on March 10 and the platinum miners remain the team to beat this season especially that the two perennial title campaigners, Dynamos and Highlanders are on a rebuilding exercise having turned their focus on rookie players.
FC Platinum will not be like Caps United who last year went all the way to the group stages but later suffered from fatigue that saw them eventually failing to defend their league title. — @skhumoyo2000.