OUR warm congratulations to Ngezi Platinum Stars for their stunning triumph to lift this year’s Castle Lager Premier Soccer League championship. The quality of their game and the admirable effort and determination evident in every match brought them this well-deserved feat.
It is not just Ngezi Platinum Stars who deserve commendation, but their fellow platinum miners, FC Platinum, who dominated the league in the past four seasons, showing that investment in football by the mining sector in Zimbabwe is paying off.
These teams have displayed unwavering commitment to their tools and impressive levels of professionalism, which has allowed them to easily see off traditional giants, Dynamos, Highlanders and CAPS United.
We are delighted by the level of investment poured into football by Mimosa Mining Company in its sponsorship of FC Platinum, and Zimplats in respect of Ngezi Platinum Stars, which has seen them emerge as the dominant forces in Zimbabwean football in recent years.
The steady and substantial supply of funds and resources from the two mining companies has facilitated the revamping of the teams’ infrastructure, the development of new facilities, top-of-the-range training gear, and the acquisition of talented and skilful players.
It is this level of investment, and the resulting professionalism it fosters, that has clearly enabled Ngezi Platinum Stars to emerge and secure victory after victory in the top-flight league this season. The professionalism displayed by these teams can also be seen in the maintenance of their stadia, their merchandising setup, and their communication channels to fans. The high standards set by these platinum teams should influence how the traditional football giants must operate.
Dynamos, Highlanders and CAPS United have failed to assert themselves in recent years, providing a stark contrast to the excellence of Ngezi Platinum Stars and FC Platinum. The lack of investment in these clubs, coupled with inadequate management and poor fundraising strategies, have caused them to lag behind in their game and lose their touch.
While the legacy of the traditional clubs holds strong, the future of our football lies in teams which can support and boost the local economy through their recruitment and expansion programmes, which in turn predictably generates ample revenues. Mimosa and Zimplats have set the ball rolling on this transformation, and if the “Big Three” do not ditch their archaic community club structures, the PSL title will keep changing hands between Mhondoro and Zvishavane.
We commend Zimplats and Mimosa for improving facilities and fostering professional management in their football teams. This has inspired young players in the small mining towns to take up football more seriously, and increased the pool of talent from which to recruit. We applaud the two platinum miners’ genuine commitment to football development in the country.
We congratulate Ngezi Platinum Stars once again. Their victory is a testament to their hard work and determination, as well as the professionalism they embody. We hope that the investment in football by mining companies will continue to foster the growth and success of local clubs and give rise to even more success stories.
Once again, congratulations to Ngezi Platinum Stars; the champions of the 2023 Castle Lager Premier Soccer League.