THIS year’s Castle Lager Premier Soccer League is expected to start at the end of March after the Premier Soccer League (PSL) yesterday announced the fixture date for the curtain raising Castle Challenge Cup match.
BY HENRY MHARA
The game, which will pit league champions FC Platinum and Chibuku Super Cup winner Highlanders, has been scheduled for Barbourfields Stadium on March 14.
A date for the start of the season has not been given by PSL as yet, but it is likely that the new campaign will start a week after the Challenge Cup match on March 21.
Winners of the match will walk away with $400 000 while the losers will get $250 000.
FC Platinum are the Castle Challenge Cup defending champions.
Coach Pieter De Jongh will be facing his former team for the first time since moving to Zvishavane in December.
The Dutchman helped revive Bosso’s fortunes after joining the club midway through the season, which culminated in them winning the Chibuku Super Cup.
From relegation strugglers when he arrived, Highlanders finished in the top half of the league.
With the Bulawayo giants dithering on tying him to a long-term contract, FC Platinum quickly swooped and took him to the Midlands.
PSL said they would unveil a new sponsorship package for the new season “soon”.
Teams are already busy preparing for the new season, with pre-season training in full swing for most of the squads in anticipation of what should be one of the most fiercely contested races, according to Ngezi Platinum Stars coach Rodwell Dlakama.
The outspoken coach has picked six teams that he believes will likely contest for the league title.
He thinks his Ngezi Platinum team, FC Platinum, Chicken Inn and the traditional big three of Dynamos, Caps United and Highlanders, all have the capacity to fight for honours.
Most of these teams have been very busy on the player transfer market, particularly Ngezi Platinum Stars, Dynamos and Caps United who have announced at least 10 new signings each.