Richard Chimbamba came off the bench to save two penalties and take Nyasa Big Bullets to the quarterfinals of the FDH Bank Cup at Kamuzu Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
It was a game that people saw eight goals in regulation time, ending in a 4-all draw.
Lanjesi Nkhoma, Patrick Mwaungulu, Precious Sambani and Babatunde Adepoju scored for Bullets while Lloyd Njaliwa bagged a brace, with Gasten Simkonda and Lesiman Singini also on target for the Lions of Kaning’ina.
Moyale Barracks staged comebacks several times as they were capitalising on Bullets’ slow, unorganised defence. Perhaps, they missed Kesten Simbi who was not in Match day squad due to injury that he sustained against Ekwendeni Hammers.
Kalisto Pasuwa admitted that his defenders let his side down.
“We played very well but we conceded goals. We made a lot of mistakes and since we are building a team, so every mistake that you make, you got punished,” said Pasuwa.
Pasuwa made two changes to the team that beat Ekwendeni Hammers at Mzuzu Stadium on Wednesday as Yankho Singo and goalkeeper Rabson Chiyenda made a start in place of Ernest Petro and Clever Mkungula.
Prichard Mwansa threw Timothy Nyirenda, Khumbo Mhone and Victor Mwale for Chisombo Magombo, Clifford Mfukizi and Walusungu Mdoka from the team that started in a defeat against Blue Eagles.
It was a brilliant first half with beautiful and classic play from both sides.
Nyasa Big Bullets came close to finding the opener in the first minute as Precious Sambani whipped in a cross but Maneno Nyoni was equal to the task to clear it away.
Yankho Singo fired wide his shot from the edge of box after connecting Idana’s sweet pass from the right flank.
Lanjesi Nkhoma stole the lead for Bullets as he connected Chimwemwe Idana’s cross from the right flank. He used his right foot to clot the ball to the right corner.
The goal gave Bullets energy as they were enjoying the play with Chimwemwe Idana, Yankho Singo, Henry Kabitchi, dictating the midfield while Patrick Mwaungulu and Lanjesi Nkhoma were pilling pressure from the flanks.
Maneno Nyoni saved the Lions of Kaning’ina from an early disaster as he held Babatunde Adepoju and impeded him from heading home Chimwemwe Idana’s cross from the right flank in the 13th minute.
The People’s team looked very dangerous when attacking as Moyale were being outnumbered in the midfield and they were leading holes in the defence paving way for Bullets’ pacy and quick attackers to break easily.
Patrick Mwaungulu registered his name on the scoresheet after a beautiful play from Babatunde, Precious Sambani. He curled his shot from left edge of the box to give Bullets two goal advantage just before 20 minute after kick off.
Moyale Barracks head coach Prichard Mwansa made an early change as he pulled out Goalkeeper, Harawa for Simfukwe to protect the leaking defence.
The Lions of Kaning’ina brought themselves into the game and Gasten Simkonda pulled one back after capitalising Bullets’ defensive error.
Two minutes later, Lloyd Njaliwa leveled for Moyale. He unleashed the bullet header, connecting the lovely ball from the right flank where Brown Magaga was operating from.
Bullets woke up from their slumber and Precious Sambani restored their lead just before half-time.
In the second half, Bullets made a change as Yankho Singo was pulled out for the newly signed Franklin Willard. They started the game on a high note as Babatunde came close to registering his name on the scoresheet but his effort was saved by Simfukwe.
Lloyd Njaliwa leveled again the matters when he reacted to Simkonda’s bounced ball in 52nd minute.
Jeremiah Simfukwe was called into action as Idana, Gomezgani Chirwa and Patrick broke through the right flank before sending his weak cross into the palms of goalkeeper.
Gasten Simkonda had the chance to extend the lead when he was found unmarked in the box but his towering header flew over the bar.
Babatunde Adepoju and Sambani came near to finding the leading goal but they all fired wide.
There was a penalty call when Patrick Mwaungulu beat a man outside the box before being pulled down by Moyale’s defender. Players and fans protested the decision.
The call was answered as Mwaungulu’s free kick was blocked with a hand by one of the Moyale defenders in the penalty area. Babatunde took the penalty and gave the People’s Team the lead in the 67th minute.
Babatunde came close to doubling his tally when he outsmarted Moyale defenders, Brown Magaga and Maneno Nyoni on the left flank. He went in the box but he was not calm and he curled his ball wide.
Lesman Singini levelled the scores again with a bullet header, tapping home Simkonda’s cross after Lanjesi failed to stop him on the left flank.
Patrick Mwaungulu and Yankho Singo were pulled out for Willard and McFarren Mgwira.
Bullets fans booed and called for the removal of goalkeeper Rabson Chiyenda who was baptised with four goals.
There were delaying tactics from Moyale Barracks as they were willing to take the game into penalties after a tremendous job of coming from behind.
Substitute Hassan Kajoke fired into the air a beautiful cross from the engineer, Chimwemwe Idana, from a close range.
Goalkeeper Rabson Chiyenda was taken out for Richard Chimbamba as Bullets were now preparing for penalties.
Delaying tactics continued as Captain Njaliwa who had had a wonderful game was down calling for the medical attention in the 84th minute.
The game ended 4-4.
In post-match penalties, Bullets scored four penalties through Babatunde Adepoju, John Lanjesi, Chimwemwe Idana and Hassan Kajoke while Yamikani Fodya saw his penalty saved by Jeremiah Simfukwe.
For Moyale Barracks, Gasten Simkonda, Black Alisen, and Lloyd Njaliwa scored their penalties while Raphael Phiri and Brown Magaga missed theirs.
Coach for Bullets Kalisto Pasuwa was happy that his team has gone through the next round.
“I am happy with the victory. It was a difficult game,” said Pasuwa.
His counterpart, Prichard Mwansa, Coach for Moyale Barracks, accepted the defeat.
“It was a good game. We played very well, but penalties are every ones chance. We didn’t expect it, but it’s football,” said Mwansa.
Elsewhere, Alex Ngwira’s era started with a victory at Dedza as Mighty Wanderers booted Dedza Dynamos in another game.
Yamikani Chester, Vincent Nyangulu and Alfred Manyozo Jr were on target for the Nomads.