RAHMAN Gumbo watched his FC Platinum rip Swaziland’s Green Mamba to shreds on Sunday, then declared: “We will get better.”
Platinum’s 4-2 win at Somhlolo Stadium in a preliminary round tie of the African Champions League capped a fine weekend for Zimbabwean teams on the continent.
Motor Action, playing in the CAF Confederations Cup preliminary round, held Black Leopards 1-1 in Polokwane on Saturday and would be seeking to finish off the South Africans in Harare in a fortnight.
Hwange, Zimbabwe’s second representatives in the Confederations Cup, made light work of Zanzibar’s Jamhuri FC with a run-away 3-0 victory at Gombani Stadium in Pemba.
In Mbabane, FC Platinum were making their Champions League bow after finishing as runners-up to Dynamos in their maiden Premier League campaign.
Donald Ngoma scored twice and new signings Allen Gahadzikwa and Ali Sadiki – formerly of Motor Action and Gunners respectively – also got off the mark as Gumbo’s men put their stamp on the fixture.
The two goals conceded put a damper to Platinum’s victory, and Gumbo expressed concern at their inability to stop the goals which he insists were avoidable.
Quard Amini, one of Platinum’s new signings, was guilty in Mamba’s first goal when he lost possession to Welile Masuku who went on to beat Tafadzwa Dube.
Mcebo Ndluli scored at the death with Platinum 4-1 up to give the Mbabane side a fighting chance in the second leg.
Gumbo said "We have to work hard on our defence, I wasn't quite happy with the way we conceded some soft goals.
"Overall, I think it was a good performance by the boys. I will give them a seven out of 10 because most of them were playing together for the first time and, to score four goals, away from home, is a good show.”
Hwange, the biggest winners of the three Zimbabwean teams, scored through Rodwell Chinyengetere, Farai Vimbisayi and Munyadzi Mungadze in a match they brutally dominated.
Bar a miracle in the return leg, Tenant Tulumba’s men are all but through to the first round.
Motor Action, meanwhile, had to come from behind after Vincent Xecane’s headed goal from a Khethokwakhe Masuku corner gave Black Leopards a 70th minute lead.
The Mighty Bulls battled back and were awarded a penalty five minutes from the end when Mongezi Mobobe handled in the box. Defender Godfrey Moyo stepped up and levelled for Joey Antipas’ men.
Should all three teams make the first round, it would mean Zimbabwe would have FOUR teams in the first round of both the Confederations Cup and Champions League for the first time in history.
Champions Dynamos have a preliminary round bye on the strength of previous performances and will join the Champions League draw in the first round.