By Carlos Kambaekwa
Tension is brewing between old foes Orlando Pirates and Black Africa as both teams start their second round campaign in the lucrative MTC Namibia Premiership this weekend.
The eagerly-awaited late kick-off Katutura derby is slated for the Sam Nujoma Stadium in Katutura on Saturday afternoon (19h00)
Black Africa lost their opening league match against the Ghosts earlier this season but Smithley Engelbrecht’s charges have since regrouped and have been amongst the early title contenders with six wins, one stalemate and three defeats from 10 matches.
Pirates on the other hand started their league campaign like a house on fire but the wheels of fortune suddenly came off and the Ghosts are currently lingering in 5th position of 18 points – four points adrift of log leaders Ramblers.
The Buccaneers could only muster five victories and were held to three draws while they found themselves on the receiving end on three occasions.
Pirates beefed up their squad during the transfer window and brought in former Blue Waters’ goal poacher Steven Maposa from Botswana to partner the exciting National Under-20 striker Eusebio Fredericks in the Buccaneers’ firing line.
With the terrible trio of Riaan Cloete, Klaas Blom and Zambian import Chipela Chipela all on song – sparks are expected to fly in a congested midfield battle.
The team’s customary suspect rearguard has been boosted by the arrival of former Black Africa utility defender Eric Ouseb who has since taken over the captain’s armband.
Ouseb will be partnered by Ivan Makina in the heart of Pirates’ defence with Brave Warriors’ goalkeeper Athiel Mbaha guarding the sticks. Wasteful striker Wilfred Saul Coetzee and pint-sized midfielder Riaan Cloete are the club’s leading goal scorers with three goals apiece.
The Buccaneers boast a total number of 18 points but the Ghosts have played a match more than their Katutura rivals who still have an outstanding first round fixture against African Stars, but logic suggest points in the kitty are better than points in the offing.