MTC Cup Kicks Off

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By Kuvee Kangueehi WINDHOEK All roads will be leading to Tsumeb and Mariental this weekend when the eagerly awaited MTC NFA Cup kicks off tomorrow. The competition, which is the biggest competition in the country, should set the second half of Namibian football alight. After the summer break many teams countrywide have started training and will be trying to avoid being kicked out in the first round. The NFA Cup competition has always been interesting over the years as it includes teams from different leagues and can well spring a few surprises. The competition’s first round, billed for the towns of Mariental and Tsumeb respectively, will showcase 16 Premier League teams from the 2004/2005 soccer season, four teams from the First Division of the 2004/2005 and 13 regional winners from the same soccer season. The winning team will walk away with a cool N$350 000 while the runner-up is to take home N$130 000 with the two semi-finalists pocketing N$60 000 each. Additional awards categories such as the player of the series and top goal scorer of the series will be N$2 000 richer while the referee of the series, assistant referee, coach, team of the series, goalkeeper, team manager, electronic media and print media of the series will each be rewarded with N$1 500 for their sweat. Participating teams will receive travelling assistance amounting to N$1 000 in each round of the tournament. The second round will take place on 17 and 18 February, the third round is scheduled for 28 and 29 April and the quarterfinal is billed for 26 and 27 May while the semis and final will take place on 1 and 2 July. Venues for the various competition rounds will be announced at a later stage. Initially 33 teams will vie for the lucrative competition with two teams from the regional winners scheduled to play an elimination match to have a total of 32 teams of which the winner will take on Blue Birds from the Omusati Region in Group A. Blue Birds got a bye during the draw. Windhoek Optics Ramblers is the defending champion after having beaten Black Africa on a penalty shoot-out 5-4, after the two sides drew two-all at the end of the 30 minutes of extra time. The schedule is as follows: Tsumeb- Group A Black Hawks vs. Golden Bees Kinacor Minolta Eleven Arrows vs. Namundjebo F C Windhoek Optics Ramblers vs. Mighty Gunners Blue Waters vs. KK Palace Marathon Sugar Chief Santos vs. Volcano F C Touch and Go vs. Play Save Life Fighters Oshakati City vs. Benfica Young Chiefs vs. United Stars Arsenal vs. Gariseb Orlando Mariental- Group B African Stars vs. Young Eleven Cymot SKW vs. Starlite Friends Orlando Pirates vs. Flying Eagles Civics vs. Black Morocco Chiefs (BMC) United Africa Tigers vs. African Blizzards Black Africa vs. Diamond City Deportivo Alaves vs. Desert Rollers

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