It’s Blantyre derby time again. Malawi’s most historic and popular fixture in the TNM Super League takes centre stage at Bingu National Stadium today at exactly 14:30pm.
Both Be Forward Wanderers and Nyasa Big Bullets have started the 2018 campaign on a very high note, each team winning twice from the opening two matches to make the upcoming derby more entertaining.
However, on paper, Bullets are favorites to win the tie having dominated the Blantyre derby for the past six years.
During the 2017 season, the people’s team collected four out of the six points over their bitter rivals who are yet to register a win in the derby since 2013.
Bullets’ dominance over Wanderers took another level last season when they defeated their rivals 5-4 on penalties to win the Carlsberg Cup, a result which the Nomads are eager to avenge.
With just a goal difference separating the two teams on the log table, Bullets have vowed to continue their good run over their rivals as they are looking forward to ending their three year-league drought.
Mike Mkwate resumed training but he is unlikely to feature in the game while Sankhani Mkandawire is yet to get a clearance from former side Mbeya FC and he is definitely out of the game.
The 13-time Super League champions will rely on the attacking duo of Chiukepo Msowoya and Bright Munthali who ransacked teams during the preseason games.
“We will not underestimate Wanderers just because we have been enjoying a winning streak over them for the past six years. We will give it all in order to win the tie. It won’t be just about points but bragging rights as well so the boys are in a good shape for the derby,” Bullets coach Rodgers Yasin told Malawi’s State Broadcaster before departing for Lilongwe.
On their part, Wanderers have vowed to put to an end Bullets’ winning run over the 2017 champions.
Technical Director Jack Chamangwana told MBC that Bullets’ winning streak over his side will not matter on Saturday as Wanderers will be looking forward to ending Bullets’ dominance.
“We are the defending champions and if we are to send a strong warning to the rest of the teams, then we must beat Bullets at all cost,” he explained.
The Nomads will be without Harry Nyirenda but Richard Chipuwa is back in contention to start the game.
Isaac Kaliyati, Peter Wadabwa and Joseph Kamwendo will be very crucial for the Nomads if they are to end Bullets’ dominance.