Super League side Blue Eagles needed penalties to overcome lower league side Ekwendeni in the Round of 16 of the Carlsberg Cup at Mzuzu Stadium on Wednesday.
Eagles won 3-1 through post-match penalties after a goalless. During the penalties, Blue Eagles goalkeeper John Soko was the hero of the day as he managed to save two penalties to help his side sail to the next stage of the competition.
Ekwendeni Hammers’ top notch Kumbukani Botha was the first spoiler when his penalty crossed over the bar while Joseph Mbewe and Ephraim Chinula saw their penalties saved by the experienced Blue Eagles goal tender.
Blue Eagles’ Maxwell Salambula, Mike Nyondo and Steve Chagoma managed to score their penalties while Gregory Nachiposi’s penalty was saved by goalie Frank Kaira. At the end of it all, it was 3-1 to Blue Eagles.
Speaking in a post-match interview, Blue Eagles coach Deklerk Msakakuona hailed his boys for making it to the quarterfinals and he saluted Ekwendeni Hammers for giving them a good game.
“It was a tough game, Ekwendeni Hammers’ fighting spirit needs to be recognized. All in all, we have managed to go to the quarterfinals. Thanks to the boys for the hard working spirit,” he said.
Ekwendeni Hammers team manager Mabuchi Mkandawire said he did not expect a wonderful display by his boys.
“We played well, Blue Eagles is a big team but the boys defied all odds and forced the game into penalties after a goalless draw,” he said.
This means all three teams from the North have kissed goodbye to this year’s Carlsberg Cup following the earlier exit of Moyale and Mchengautuwa.