Ricky Zililo, Senior Sports Reporter
LACK of potency left Highlanders’ coach Mandla Mpofu worried as he watched his charges failing to turn their dominance into goals against Ngezi Platinum Stars in a Castle Lager Premier Soccer League match played at Barbourfields Stadium on Sunday.
Bosso were held to a goalless draw by Ngezi, who came to Barbourfields having scored a total of 23 goals in eight games; with 18 coming in the Chibuku Super Cup and five in their opening league match, a 5-0 rout of Bulawayo City.
On Sunday, Mpofu’s game plan went well as his charges kept Ngezi at bay, suffocating them and ensuring they didn’t expose goalkeeper Ariel Sibanda.
The defence was resolute, with Andrew Tandi thrown into the fray to partner Peter Muduhwa ahead of Andrew Mbeba.
Highlanders crowded the midfield with veteran Winston Mhango maintaining the team’s shape and protecting the central defence.
Bosso were comfortable on the ball, quick to recover after losing possession and even created chances, but what was clear was that they need a gunman.
What should worry Mpofu is that from seven Chibuku Super Cup games and two PSL matches, his side has scored just four goals. This means that they are averaging less than a goal in every two games.
“On a positive note, we’re showing progress with every game. Look at our defence, we managed to keep a side that has been scoring for fun at bay. We created opportunities, but fell short in the final third. We could have done better, but we need to work on our finishing and start converting those chances,” said Mpofu.
Of the four goals that Bosso have scored during the Chibuku Super Cup competition, goalkeeper Ariel Sibanda had one from the penalty spot, while striker Lynoth Chikuhwa, who missed the Ngezi encounter after reportedly testing positive for Covid-19, scored a brace and Washington Navaya grabbing the other.
While Mpofu continues to worry about where his next goal will come from, defending champions FC Platinum saw off Chicken Inn with a 2-1 victory to maintain their brilliant start.
FC Platinum and Manica Diamonds, who edged Bulawayo City 2-1, are the only sides yet to drop a point, with the reigning champions on top of the league table due to a superior goal difference.
At the tail end, table anchors City and Yadah are pointless after two games.
Bulawayo Chiefs continued with their best start since their Premiership debut in 2018, by avoiding defeat in the opening two matches. Chiefs held Cranborne Bullets to a 0-0 draw, a result that sees them occupy sixth place, tied on four points with Ngezi, Black Rhinos, Herentals and ZPC Kariba. — @ZililoR.