The Blantyre derby yesterday failed to live up to expectation as Mighty Be Forward Wanderers and Nyasa Big Bullets settled for a drab one-all draw at Kamuzu Stadium.
Apart from the moment of brilliance from Nomads’ Nigerian striker Amos Bello’s goal in the 12th minute and Chiukepo Msowoya’s 37th minute equaliser from a soft penalty, the game lacked the quality it deserved.
But the two sides’ coaches felt salvaging a point from the derby was better than none.
“It is a marathon and not a sprint,” Wanderers coach Jack Chamangwana said.
Franco Ndawa thanked his players for coming back into the game in time after Wanderers had taken the lead.
“My players worked very hard,” he said.
Wanderers were the better side in the first-half.
They were first on the ball and attacked in numbers, but lack of precision upfront saw the Nomads missing three clear chances in opening minutes through Peter Wadabwa and Bello that could have made a huge difference.
But impressive Wanderers import Bello got it right in the 12th minute when he rounded off Bullets goalkeeper Ernest Kakhobwe to drive the ball home.
Credit should go to Ted Sumani, who initiated the move deep in midfield—dismantling Bullets defence piece by piece before laying it for the Nigerian.
The Nomads continued their dominance in the midfield where Bullets coach Ndawa got it wrong in his fielding. He opted for defensive George Nyirenda and Bashir Maunde, who were no match for versatile Wanderers midfielders Rafiq Mussa and Rafiq Namwela.
But in the second-half Bullets took over after Ndawa took out misfiring Fischer Kondowe and Maunde for ball-players Henry Kabichi and promising midfielder Mike Mkwate.
Substitute Mussa Manyenje’s effort hit the post after looping the ball over Wanderers goalkeeper Bester Phiri in the 89th minute.
As the two giants shared the spoils, Blue Eagles continued their campaign with 1-0 win over Azam Tigers through Enock Likoswe’s goal at Kalulu Stadium in Nchalo to consolidate their lead at the top of the table with nine points.
Bullets and Wanderers tie at five points.
Attention now shifts to Lilongwe where capital city rivals Civo United and Silver Strikers clash at Civo Stadium. n