Nyasa Big Bullets head coach Kalisto Pasuwa spoke to the media on Thursday ahead our TNM Super League home clash against Ekwendeni Hammers on Saturday.
The People’s Team will be meeting Hammers at Kamuzu Stadium after collecting four points away in the central region at the hands of Blue Eagles and TN Stars with a 0-1 victory and a goalless draw, respectively.
Among the questions, journalists took Pasuwa back to last weekend’s results in which he said he was satisfied with the four points he collected from the two assignments played within 24 hours.
The coach also discussed the management of his squad, not having a first eleven and the type of opposition he expects from Saturday’s opposition, which the defending champions defeated 0-1 away at Mzuzu Stadium in the first-round of this campaign a month ago.
Here is every word from Pasuwa’s pre-match conference…
Take us through the preparations and your thoughts about the match against Ekwendeni…
“We traveled on Sunday coming back from Kasungu and we rested the boys on Monday in order for them to recover, before regrouping on Tuesday. Everything has been going on very well and the boys are ready to go. We don’t have any fresh injuries in the team, which leaves us with all the 30 plus players to choose from for the upcoming game on Saturday.”
You played them away from home in which you won 0-1 and this time around they are visiting, what sort of opposition are you expecting from them?
“Ekwendeni Hammers is a team you cannot dare to underrate. I am one of the coaches who has been talking about these teams. They have improved a lot and when we played them, they were good on the break and we need to put everything in place before facing them on Saturday in order to come up with points. In Mzuzu, we scored in the 90th minute because they were good, so we need to split them apart in terms of phases on Saturday so that we collect maximum points.”
How painful was it to drop two points last week at Kasungu Stadium?
“We might want to say it was painful, but again remember we were playing two games and considering the fact that we were playing in one of the bumpy pitches in Malawi, we should also look at fatigue on the boys whenever they play two games [within 24 hours]. People might compare us to other leagues where they play a game after three to four days, but it’s totally different from us where we play two games within 24-hours on bad surfaces. Those boys played on Saturday where they put up a gallant fight to beat Blue Eagles and in the next game you could see clearly that the players were tired and couldn’t push more. Of course people might say they are used to it, but they are humans too, so I am proud of their performances in those two games and the points they collected, they did well and we are looking forward to the next games that are coming.”
Looking at the gap between Bullets and Silver Strikers, are you not playing under pressure to catch up with the log leaders?
“Football is a marathon. We have until the last day of the games to say we have finished playing football. We will try as much as we can to manage our squad in order for us to finish good then we will talk about the championship at the end of the year.”
Bullets haven’t been consistent when it comes to the Starting XI, won’t this affect your title defence?
“When Bullets are employing players, they go for 30 or more players, so I wouldn’t want a situation where my bosses would come to me and ask me why I am only using the very same eleven players out of 30. Those players were employed to play football at Bullets and we can’t use the very same players who played a game on Saturday to play another game on Sunday then we are not doing any good to football and even to the life span of the players. We need to manage the players so that they last in their careers, hence giving a chance to players who are good and are willing to play.”