Air Force of Zimbabwe side Chapungu might be nowhere near the action in the Castle Lager Premier Soccer League title tussle, but they might actually hold the key to the destiny of the championship.
The Gweru-based side will play all three of the championship-contending sides — FC Platinum, Caps United and Highlanders — in what is left of this term.
The airmen, sitting on position 12 on the log table with 31 points, have only lost twice at home this year to Dynamos and ZPC Kariba.
Interestingly, all of the top three teams have a trip each to Ascot Stadium to face John Nyikadzino’s side, who are in no mood to make points donations as they aim for a top-eight finish.
Highlanders will be the first to face Chapungu as they date the airmen in their next league match.
FC Platinum will play Harare City and Ngezi Platinum before their Midlands derby with Chapungu, while Caps United will only make the trip to Gweru on the last day of this intriguing edition of the league.
FC Platinum are edging closer to their first ever league title since they came into the top-flight league with 51 points, a point above Caps United and four ahead of Highlanders.
With five matches to the end of the season for each of the league’s clubs, Chapungu, who collected maximum points from Caps United and held both FC Platinum and Highlanders at Ascot Stadium last season, have vowed that it will be tough for the title aspirants to get anything.
“These are going to be very difficult matches. The three teams (FC Platinum, Caps United and Highlanders) want to get three points at all costs, but we are going to give it our best to come up with something as we want to improve on our standing on the log table and meet our target of a top-eight finish, which is very possible if you look at the log-standing.
“These are seasoned teams who are playing very well, but for us to reach our target, we will have to beat the best,” Nyikadzino said.
Chapungu lost to all three in the reverse fixtures suffering a 1-0 defeat to FC Platinum in April while they were clobbered 3-0 by Caps United with Highlanders taking all three points courtesy of a 1-0 win.
FC Platinum and Caps United both have Ngezi Platinum to deal with at home with the log leaders also playing their last league game against Tsholotsho away.
After Chapungu, Highlanders have two home games against Bulawayo City and Tsholotsho before engaging FC Platinum at Mandava, which could be the highlight of the season on Match Day 29.
Caps United’s other tough hurdles will be Border Strikers at Dulivhadzimu Stadium in their next assignment before the big Harare derby against Dynamos at the National Sports Stadium.- NewsDay