Karonga United’s fine start to the second round of the TNM Super League continued to gather momentum after edging out Civil Sporting Club 1-0 at the Karonga Stadium on Saturday.
Captain Peter Mselema was the hosts’ hero on the day as his lone first half strike from the penalty spot was enough to down an out of sorts Civil who had their team manager Gabriel Chirwa sent to the stands after protesting the awarding of the penalty by referee Stephano Gomani.
The match played in front of a sizeable crowd saw Karonga begin the game strongly by dominating the ball and pinning the visitors in their own half.
Gule Mwaisope and Antony Mfune all had sights at goal in the early stages of the first half without testing the visitors keeper Tiwone Tembo.
The ingwinas of Karonga finally took the lead in the 18th minute as Mselema coolly put away a penalty after Mfune was brought down inside the six-yard box by one of the Civils defenders.
Despite going a goal behind, the away sides spirits were still not awoke as they continued to struggle to muster any meaningful opportunities on Antony Singinis goal.
In the second half, the two sides began sluggishly as they failed to keep the ball and mount any serious attacks at each others goals.
The first meaningful attempt at goal didnt arrive till the 60th minute with Fletcher Bandawe going cross with a left footed shot inside the hosts’ penalty area.
Despite Civil growing more into the game as the second half went on, Karonga looked more likely to grab a second from the counter attack.
Victor Lungo and Gule Mwaisope all had chances to seal a comfortable win but wasted opportunities late on as the hosts hanged on to a deserve victory against an abject Sporting side.
Speaking in a post-match interview, Karonga United coach Dan Dzinkambani expressed delight in his sides’ display and tactical discipline in the win.
“I thought we were really good today against a tough team in Civil, we really neutralised them and their threats hence deserved the three vital points,” he said.
Efforts to speak with Civil Sporting Club officials proved futile as they declined any post-match interviews after the final whistle.
With the win, Karonga United have climbed up to 9th on the log table with 22 points from 17 matches, only 2 points behind Civil Sporting who have 24 points from 17 games.