Karonga United’s hopes of staving off relegation suffered a setback on Saturday as they were forced to a one-all draw by a stubborn Mzuni FC side in a TNM Super League match played at the Karonga stadium.
The crocodiles of Karonga dominated the first half with 3 clear goal scoring chances squandered.
Shariff Shamama had the first chance but his rasping strike inside the penalty area was brilliantly parried away by the Green Intellectuals’ custodian Pilirani Mapila.
In the 17th minute Anthony Mfune missed the best of them all but shot wide when it was easier to score after he was brilliantly played in by Shamama.
Despite being in the back foot for most of the first half the green intellectuals looked dangerous on the counter attack with the impressive Ramadan Mtafu and Joseph Mbaga with the latter going close on several occasions with rasping strikes outside the box.
In the second half the away side began strongly pinning the home side in their half with neat one touch football but Gift Kasambala and Mtafu failed to capitalize on their pressure with their chances.
The game sparked into life in the 75th minute when the lively Chamama put Karonga united into the led with a stunning solo effort.
However the led was quickly wiped out 4 minutes later by substitute Shelton Banda who ruthlessly finished past a helpless Happy Msowoya after capitalizing on a mix up by the home side’s defence.
In a post-match interview Karonga united assistant coach Wilberforce Lungwe, bemoaned his charges lack of concentration in the Mzuni’s late equalizer.
“This draw to us feels like a defeat as we thought we did enough to earn the three points but we made one mistake and we were punished,” said a visibly frustrated Lungwe.
However, Mzuni coach Gilbert Chilwa, said the draw was a fair result for both teams.
“Looking at the balance of play Karonga dominated the first half but we showed great resolve and character to fight back to share the spoils so as a coach I’m satisfied with the point,” said Chilwa.
Despite the draw Karonga united climbed one place up the log table to 11th with 31 points from 27 matches level with Dwangwa United who have 2 games in hand while Mzuni stay in 7th place with 34 points from also 27 matches.