By the sports journalist
Representing ZIMBABWE in the CAF Champions League, FC Platinum withdrew from the competition in the preliminary round after losing 4-5 to Angola GD Sagrada Esperança on penalties in a match played on Saturday at national sports stadium.
After managing to hold their opponents to a goalless draw in Angola last week, FC Platinum were the big favorites to secure the home victory and advance to the first round of the continental club competition.
The Zimbabwean team failed to break through the visitors’ defense, however, meaning both teams needed the penalty shootout lottery to break the deadlock after settling for a draw and virgin in both legs.
FC Platinum were under pressure from the start after two-time Football Star of the Year Rodwell Chinyengetere missed the first shot on goal. They were forced to pay as GD Sagrada Esperança converted all of their five shots on goal to secure victory and place in the first round of the competition.
This is the second time that Platinum minors have been excluded from this tournament at the preliminary round stage by an Angolan team.
FC Platinum coach Norman Mapeza admitted his men were second best from both matches.
“It’s very unfortunate, the boys did their best to score goals, but it wasn’t our day.
“We are taking some positive points from this game and we are not giving up hope yet. It was a balanced game, but you all know the penalties are tricky and once you get there it’s up to everyone to win.
“It’s tough for Chinyengetere, but he’s a senior player and I know he’s going to handle that and not be discouraged and improve as well,” Mapeza said.
Despite their early exit, Zvishavane’s side put a good picture of themselves given they only had three weeks to prepare for this competition, against an Angolan side who had played even during the induced lockdown. by Covid-19.