There are three valuable points at stake. Whoever gets them is guaranteed a three-point lead at the summit of the countryâ€™s flagship football league, the TNM Super League.
It is the big one this afternoon as reigning champions Silver Strikers host their capital city rivals Civo United at Silver Stadium in Area 47.
Apart from the fight for the top slot,Â pride is also at stake.
Both teams have vowed to give their best in their latest battle for supremacy.
Silver and Civo are tied at 18 points with the former having a slight advantage courtesy of a superior goal difference. The Bankers also haveÂ two games in hand.
With third-placed Mighty Wanderers on bye this weekend,Â it means by the end of this week 10, the leadership of the league will belong to the two giants.
Silver have the bragging rights having beaten Civo twice in league games last season.
The Bankers go into the game beaming with confidence following their back-to-back victories over Kamuzu Barracks (3-0) and Blue Eagles (1-0) .
However, Silver assistant coach Hellings Mwakasungula predicted a tough encounter.
â€œIt is always a tough game. OurÂ players know the importance of this match as it will boost our chances of defending the championship.
â€œIt will also be a yardstick to measure if we have indeed turned the corner because we cannot be swayed by the two recent wins.
â€œHowever, we are prepared for the match,â€said Mwakasungula.
Civoâ€™s seasoned coach Alex Masanjala said they are equally geared for a win.
His side is equally in high spirits following a thrilling 3-2 win over Wanderers last Saturday.
â€œWe must win this game at all costs. We want to overtake them.The last time we visited them, they beat us, so we want to avenge as well as regain our dominance over them,â€ said Masanjala.
Both teams go into the match without injuries and suspensions.
On Friday, Masanjala claimed striker Noel â€˜Amfumuâ€™ Mkandawire has been cleared andÂ is available for selection, but Escom United and Sulom said he was not as of yesterday morning.
â€œNo, we have not cleared him.Â He is still our player as you saw he played for us in the Presidential Cup last week. So, he will not playÂ for Civo,â€ said Escom chairperson Funuel Nkhono.
With or without Mkandawire, Masanjala still has the depth in quality to see off their rivals. Their marksman Welani Nyirenda is expected to lead them in attack
Their other key players include Lusekere Mwathengere, Charles Ben, Lazarus Chirwa and Dave Ngâ€™ambi.
On the other hand, Silver will be welcoming back Bernard Namangwiyo from a red card suspension as well as Lucky Malata from an injury.
But as usual, they are spoilt for choiceÂ on who to field from theirÂ 25-plus star-studded squad.
Rodrick Gonani, who has four league goals, should continue his scoring spree.
Elsewhere, Kabwafu play Azam Tigers in Mzuzu while Red Lions host Big Bullets in Zomba.
Blantyre United will play Blue Eagles at the Kamuzu stadium. n