WINDHOEK – Thanks to woeful shooting by their opponents in last weekend’s derby, FNB Orlando Pirates goes into tonight’s penultimate MTC Premiership clash against traditional rivals Black Africa with their tails up.
The two Katutura giants met in a dress rehearsal for the real McCoy, that is tonight’s do or die clash of the titans at Windhoek’s Independence Stadium 20h00.
Ronnie Kanelelo’s misfiring charges are like men possessed and will go all out to collect the maximum points at stake – in the process reclaiming the bragging rights from their resurgent archrivals. The Namibian champions only have themselves to blame for their quarterfinal exit from the lucrative BidVest Cup at the hands of their eternal enemies.
Mathematically, the Gemengde outfit still has an outside chance of retaining the coveted MTC Premiership league title but would surely need a Herculean act to topple runaway log leaders African Stars from the summit.
Perched in unfamiliar third place – 12 points adrift of Stars – Kanalelo will settle for nothing less than victory since defeat would all but seal their fate, denting their fading title aspirations.
In prolific net-buster Nicky “Tornado” Musambani, the Buccaneers have certainly unearthed a gem of an athlete. The boy is a complete goal poacher, your typical old-fashioned striker, who is capable of hurting teams at any given time as can be attested by his cleverly executed goal in last weekend’s 1-0 win over the same opponents.
Pirates mentor Lucky Kakuva said: “Realistically, we are gunning for second place because Stars have built an unassailable lead and the title is only for them to lose it.” The Ghosts are lying in a precarious sixth place on the log standings – a mountainous 15-point off the pace but Kakuva believes the runner-up spot is a definite possibility.
“At the moment, we have no injury worries or suspensions, so we will field our strongest line up because we want to collect as many points as possible to move up the log standings.
“On the balance of last weekend’s performance, we totally dominated the proceedings and could have won easily had the boys taken the numerous goal-scoring chances we created,” charged Kanalelo.
“If we play the same way we did on Sunday, I’m confident we will fashion a positive result this time around. Our strategy is to fully exploit some flaws in the rearguard of Pirates’ defense manned by twin centre backs Brian Gurirab and Ivan Makina. Both are keen ball players with a tendency of venturing forward leaving the defensive responsibility to their fullbacks. I’m confident we are capable of getting a good result,” said a relaxed Kanalelo.