Mighty Wanderers vice-general secretary Chris Kananji insists today’s Blantyre Mayor Charity Shield meeting with Big Bullets ‘is just like any other match’, but truth is there would be no love lost when they stage a third instalment of Blantyre derby at Kamuzu Stadium.
MultiChoice Malawi has sponsored the game under the ‘Keep Blantyre Clean and Green’ Mayor Noel Chalamanda-led fundraising campaign. It is a game for a good cause, but there is something to fight for.
“The approach would be the same. We will treat this game like any other. There will be no special approach,” Kananji insisted on Wednesday, playing down two league losses to Bullets in the 2014 season.
But truth is that, while Bullets enter the pitch fresh from a season that yielded a haul of three out of four available trophies on the land, the mood at the Lali Lubani Road is at its lowest ebb, having finished ninth in the league and virtually empty-handed.
Wanderers were during the season, that cost the jobs of Stuart Mbolembole and Gerald Phiri, not even good enough to win Be Forward tournament a few months ago, therefore, the Nomads have some bits of pride to salvage plunging into today’s battle, said club chairperson George Chamangwana.
“It hurts losing every game, including a social game, so we cannot take this game lightly. There is pride at stake,” Chamangwana noted.
If there is a puzzle, coach Kannock Munde and technical director Yasin Osman have been struggling to solve is getting a consistent scorer in the frontline, with leading scorers being midfielders Jacob Ngwira, Cuthbert Sinetre and Mike Kaziputa.
So, the Nomads coaches should expect Sparrow Msowoya, Elia Munthali and Luka Milanzi to, for once raise their game and deliver the goods if the team is to get the shield and K1 million at stake for the trophy expected to raise K12 million.
However, it is all looking good in the other side of Blantyre where the TNM Super League winning party is just getting better and better and red is still the dominant colour in town.
With three trophies, including IntoSports Cup and Carlsberg Cup, the honeymoon should still be at its crescendo at Bullets. However, assistant coach Mabvuto Lungu insists there is no sitting on their laurels as Bullets are warming up for CAF Champions League participation.
“We have spoiled our fans with winning most games and we do not want to spoil the party with a loss. We want to keep a winning momentum. We would have loved the players to have a rest, but with the CAF League coming, this is an opportunity for us to assess other players such as Miracle Gabeya, Dalitso Siliva and Bashir Maunde,” Lungu said on Thursday. n