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75th Blantyre Derby promises fireworks

By Tione Andsen

Lilongwe, May 2: 75th Blantyre Derby promise fireworks as Defending TNM Champions, FCB Nyasa Big Bullets will play host to their traditional rivals, Mighty Mukuru Wanderers on Saturday at Kamuzu Stadium in Blantyre.

The Derby is expected to meet the desired performance the two teams have been displaying in the past encounters.

Bullets are fourth on the log table with two wins and two draws with eight points while Wanderers are third with the same number of points but they have superior goal difference over their rivals.

The battle for top spot in the 2024 TNM Super League remains cardinal for both teams owing to the fact that the price money for the champion has been increased to K 100 million from K40 million.

Bullets have dominated the league for the past six years and are aiming to register the seventh one at the expense of their rivals, Wanderers who once were crowned champions in 2017.

This will be the maiden encounter for Wanderers coach, Nsanzuarwimo Ramadhan as he has just returned to Malawi football after a long spell after coaching the two teams previous.

Although his returned was spoiled with a 1-1 draw against Kamuzu Barracks during the opened but the team managed to pick up and won two games before they were held to a goalless draw against Bangwe All Stars.

Bullets mentor, Callisto Pasuwa has a feel of the Blantyre derby with intense heat it brings on the table.

He will have use his available arsenals in order to edge his rival, Ramadhan but 90 minutes will tell and a better team will carry the day.

Wanderers defence need to be on watch out to their former striker now with Bullets, Ephraim Kondowe as he is proving to be a goal provider for the people’s team this season.

The wing defence need to patronize the movements of Patrick Mwaungulu and Lanjesi Nkhoma if they are to cut the supply line upfront.

However, the Nomads will depend on Christopher Kumwembe’s ability to win aerial balls against the paring of Bullets central defence of Collins Mujuru and Clyde Senaj.

If the Wanderers coach panel will include last year’s top goal scorer. Clement Nyondo on the starting line, they will add fire power upfront in order to give bullets defence tough time.

They are expected to attack through Wisdom Mpinganjira, Gaddi Chirwa and Isaac Kaliati from the midfield while Bullets midfield marshalled by Aaron Lloyd will have clearly monitor their moves.

Last year’s derby produced no winner as it all ended in 0-0 and 1-1 draws and both occasions, Wanderers were dominating play.

Both teams will be playing catch up game in order to reach 11 points to equal current league leaders, Silver Strikes.

The Bankers are facing log anchors, Baka City in Karonga and the games if they win will consolidate their lead on top.

“We are expecting a high quality derby and should be more entertaining. Supporters need to come in their numbers to watch the game.

“The battle for points is what the two teams are hoping for,” a Bangwe based football follower, Vincent Jumbe said.

He said with good officiation, the derby will entertain soccer fans.

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