Dedza Police Youth on Saturday beat Mangochi Police Reserve 3-2 to emerge this year’s FMB Under-20 national champions at Zomba Community Centre ground.
It was a deserved win for the Central Region side who booted out last year’s champions Fish Eagles 3-1 in the semi-finals, the previous day. Tears of joy, flare and pomp characterised the climax of the tournament.
Goals from Tinkhani Wazomba and a brace from Henry Joseph, which also earned him the Golden Boot Award, were enough to seal the victory for Dedza Police Youth. Mangochi came twice to equalise through goals from Luciano Paul and Player of the Tournament Hassan Kajoke. Joseph and Kajoke each received K50 000 for their feat.
However, the most painful moment for Mangochi came in stoppage time when, with a minute to go, a defender handled the ball in the goal area prompting referee Denis Nguluwe to point at the dreaded spot. Joseph made no mistake for the winning goal.
Speaking before prize presentation, FMB head of marketing Sylvia Mataka pledged continued sponsorship of the competition.
“The evidence is there for all to see because FMB U-20 leagues have unearthed talent that we see in Super League clubs in the country. Other players are with the Flames at the Cecafa Challenge Cup tournament in Ethiopia. The statistics shows that we really have talent to expose and this drives us on to continue sponsoring,” she said.
Football Association of Malawi (FAM) president Walter Nyamilandu hailed FMB for assisting in the development of football in the country through sponsoring the junior leagues.
Dedza Police Youth received K750 000 plus a trophy for being champions whereas Mangochi Police Reserve received K500 000 ($836).