Bullets open up three-point lead after victory over Bangwe All Stars


A quick first half brace from Lanjesi Nkhoma inspired FCB Nyasa Big Bullets to a comfortable 2-0 win over Bangwe All Stars to open a three-point lead at the top of the TNM Super League.

The match, which was scheduled to take place on Saturday at Mpira Stadium, was moved earlier due to Bullets’ arranged friendly match against Silver Strikers in Lilongwe on Sunday as part of Kamuzu day celebrations.

Kalisto Pasuwa made two changes to the side that hammered Moyale Barracks last week, with Maxwell Phodo coming in for the injured Hassan Kajoke whilst Kesten Simbi replaced Collins Okumu who was not part of the squad while Mabvuto Lungu maintained his starting eleven that won 2-1 away to Karonga United last week.

The People’s Team began the match in the best possible fashion as they found themselves two goals up inside the first fifteen minutes of the opening half.

From the word go, Bullets dominated possession from their usual high pressing wingers in Lanjesi Nkhoma, Patrick Mwaungulu and Mike Mkwate, with Alick Lungu and Blessings Mpokera adding the spice with their attacking prowess in the wings.

The first shot at goal came from Phodo on the edge of the box, but it was easily saved by Ernest Kakhobwe.

But the visitors broke the deadlock in a brilliant fashion in the 14th minute when Lungu made a brilliant run into the penalty box before finding Nkhoma who just tapped in, beating Kakhobwe who could only see the ball shaking the net, 0-1.

As Pasuwa’s charges were still celebrating their goal, they added their second two minutes later through Nkhoma again, who was set through by Phodo to smash the ball past defenseless Kakhobwe, 0-2.

The quick goals forced Mabvuto Lungu to substitute Chimango Kayira and Micheal Tetteh for Emmanuel Lino and James Tambwali to try to tame Bullets’ pace.

The log leaders were in total control, and they showed no signs of slowing down as Lungu nearly scored our third goal, but his rocket shot was easily saved by Kakhobwe in the 25th minute.

At the other end, Robert Saizi had his shot outside the penalty box well taken care of by Richard Chimbamba, who was reduced to a mere spectator as most of the action was taking place at the other end of the field.

Thirty six minutes into the match, Mwaungulu saw his shot well saved by Kakhobwe, who was the busiest of the two goalkeepers.

With five minutes left to play before the recess, Phodo found Nkhoma in the offensive zone and the winger advanced into the penalty box but he was brought down by Fanizo Mwansambo as he was about to pull the trigger but Referee Cassim Shaibu waved play on, a decision that was protested by Bullets’ technical panel and that was all for the half.

Come second half, the hosts recharged themselves and took the game to Bullets, who were now forced to sit back as Lino, Saizi and Innocent Msowoya pressed in search of the much needed goal to give them hope of atleast making a comeback.

In the 50th minute, a communication breakdown between Simbi and Cylde Senaji nearly gifted the hosts a goal as they failed to clear a long bouncing ball from Msowoya but Lino was late to respond and allowed Lungu to clear the danger away from the box.

The hosts were coming wave after wave, and they should have had a goal in the 54th minute when Lino’ shot was blocked by Senaji for a cornerkick, which Bullets easily defended.

After the hour mark, Lino had another opportunity inside the penalty box when he was at the receiving end of Saizi’ pass but he was very unfortunate to see the ball missing Chimbamba’s upright with just an inch.

Bullets were under heavy pressure, forcing Pasuwa to introduce Anthony Mfune, Precious Sambani, Kenneth Pasuwa, and Gomezgani Chirwa for Phodo, Mkwate, Mpokera and Lungu.

The change brought some relief as Bullets slowed down Bangwe’s pace, forcing them to play inside their own half.

Mwaungulu was very unfortunate not to register his name on the scoresheet as his goal-bound shot was blocked by Talandira Chigaula, who was a marvel to watch throughout the match.

Mwaungulu was then replaced by Stanley Billiat in the 77th minute.

Bangwe All Stars’ dominance failed to bring anything to the table and they should have conceded in the 84th minute when they were caught on counter but Kakhobwe produced a double save to deny Mfune from doing more damage.

At the back, Bullets remained resilient and saw out the victory which ultimately took them three points clear at the top ahead of fellow title contenders Silver Strikers and Mighty Mukuru Wanderers who are facing Moyale Barracks on Sunday.

Nkhoma was named man of the match, following yet another brilliance work, which has also seen him topping the scorer’ chat with six goals.

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