Be Forward Wanderers must deal with a red- card curse and a very hungry opposition in Surestream FC who are just looking for a point in today’s 2015 TNM Super League first- round meeting at Kamuzu Stadium in Blantyre.
Winless in two games in which they have conceded seven goals while scoring three, all through a gem Peter Msowoya, Surestream technical director Peter Mponda has opted to be pragmatic.
“Going forward we do not have a problem as we are able to attack, create and score. But the challenge is at the back. Against Wanderers we will go for a point. We have found a way of dealing with crosses. In both games we lost, it is not like our defence was sliced open, it’s just failure to deal with set pieces,” Mponda said yesterday.
The task of dealing with crosses rests on the young legs of Chembezi Dennis, whereas going forward, the Nsejjere Premier Division champions have enough attacking options with Benard Chimaimba and Msowoya ready to drop deep and link up play.
Wanderers coach Elia Kananji admitted yesterday that Surestream’s strength lies in midfield which has riches of talent including the likes of Isaac Mwale and Mike Mkwate.
“You have to stop them from playing right in midfield. If you let them knock the ball around in midfield, they can cause trouble for you. We know they will come flat out as they have lost two games on the trot,” Kananji admitted.
With an expensively assembled side that has cost millions, Kananji has a huge task to manage expectation as he tries combinations while also managing red cards to regulars Mike Kaziputa, a winger, and midfield creative force Rafik Mussa.
“We have replacements. Expect Jabulani Linje in action. He is looking great in training and he could replace Mussa. As for Lionel Asu, if he gets his clearance, we will assess him in training,” Kananji added.
In defence, a lack of height in the three-man backline of Kondwani Lufeyo, Francis Mulimbika and Stanley Sanudi has left Wanderers are vulnerable. Goalkeeper Richard Chipuwa too has been found wanting when it comes to detect danger.
Talk about scoring, then the Nomads have in-form Muhamad Sulumba to thump them in . He has netted thrice in two games all with his head. Mulimbika and Isaac Kaliyati have so far been providing assists for the big and energetic former Blantyre United centre-forward.
Wanderers have four points from a possible six having dropped points when letting slip a 2-0 lead against Azam Tigers last Saturday.
In Dedza, Kamuzu Barracks (KB) coach Temwa Msuku wants to build on their first win of the season when welcoming high-flying Big Bullets. KB was among few teams that defeated the champions last season, hence coach Nsanzurwimo Ramadhan cannot take the soldiers for granted.
Again the stage has been left for new midfield gem Eneya Banda to display his stuff that has taken the Bullets family down the memory lane, with his twists, turns and passes reminding many of Robert Ng’ambi.
The Bullets are among leaders alogside Blue Eagles, Red Lions and mafco on six points having started solidly with two straight wins over Silver Strikers (2-1) and Surestream (3-1); a testimony of their disciplined displays.
The other fixture this afternoon is between Epac FC and Mzuni at Civo Stadium.