Windhoek-Buoyed by last weekend’s good showing that propelled Brian Isaacs’ huff-and-puff Civilians into collecting four valuable points away from home – Civics go into tonight’s MTC Premiership clash against title-chasing Black Africa in high spirits.
The Civilians recorded a hard fought 1-0 victory against Young Chiefs away from home on the heels of a disappointing 2-all draw against relegation-threatened Chief Santos the day before – their 10th drawn match of the current term.
The former triple league champions are currently perched in a precarious eleventh position on the bloated 16-team domestic flagship football league log table – seven points from the relegation zone.
Lucky Richter’s soldiers are still licking their wounds following the team’s shock 2-1 defeat at the hands of unfashionable Life Fighters in their last league assignment and will be determined to dust themselves off with a much-anticipated improved performance against their cross-town opponents.
The dethroned champions are chasing their fifth league title in six seasons but will face a mammoth task to realize their dream in the face of bridging the gulf between runaway log leaders African Stars.
The Reds are enjoying a comfortable insurmountable eight points lead ahead of nearest challengers BA in the title race.
Another slip from Lucky Richter’s brigade could all but signal any further interest they might have in reclaiming the coveted league title from Tigers, come end of the season.
In Isaacs and Richter the two teams boast doubtlessly some of the finest shrewd football brains in the business and tonight’s clash of the titans surely promises to have all the required ingredients of a real humdinger.
Coach Brian Isaacs lamented his inexperienced team’s serial inability to take their chances in front of goal. “If you look at the shocking number of draws and overall statistics, it clearly shows that we don’t concede a lot of goals.
“We have drawn matches that were there for the taking but we are working on our finishing,” added the soft-spoken multiple-title winning gaffer.
The Civilians will be without the services of inspirational skipper Peter Stevens as he starts his one-match suspension after he accumulated four cautions, and to rub salt into the wound twin strikers Ignatius Horaseb and Alube Matheus are both ruled out through injury.
Civics await a wounded BA side whose mentor Lucky Richter is fuming after his charges dropped three valuable points against lowly Life Fighters last weekend.
“We had no business losing against Fighters – the players were complacent after the resounding victory over bitter rivals Orlando Pirates. We should have won that match hands down because on the balance of play they only had two shots on target, which they scored from.”
Richter hinted that he would ring a few changes to his starting line-up to give some of the fringe players a run against the Civilians.
“It should be understood that this will be our fourth match within a space of seven days having played Citizens, Pirates and Fighters in succession.”
Versatile centre back Marry-Boy Martin and speedy winger Wendel Rutard will be notable absentees, as the pair serve their one-match suspension. Puje Ngaruka is likely to be included in the starting line-up after the overlapping fullback missed BA’s defeat to Life Fighters through suspension.