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Bullets Reserves held at home to surrender SRFL title

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FCB Nyasa Big Bullets Reserves surrendered the ThumbsUp Southern Region Football League title defence following a goalless draw against FOMO FC at the Kamuzu Stadium on Wednesday afternoon.

The defending champions came into the match trailing 2-0 and failed to overturn the deficit at home as they could only be held to a goalless stalemate.

What happened

With a clear intent to turn the tie around, our youngsters started brightly, but it would be the visitors who would register the first attempt at goal through James Msowoya, who forced a fine save from our goalkeeper Joel Ngwira at the near post seven minutes from the start.

That alarm served the young Bullets well as they geared up their offensive play and managed to pin the visitors in their own half with a quick exchange of the ball.

While doing well in possession, Enos Chatama’s boys could not manage to get their attempts on target as most of their penetrative moves only ended in us winning set-pieces on the edge of the box which we squandered with poor execution.

With the affairs of the tie in that way, the first half could only end goalless.

Looking to inject more creativity into the team, coach Chatama introduced attacking midfielder Francis Malikebu for Lyton Chinong’one at the restart.

13 minutes into the second half, the visitors nearly gifted us a goal as their last man lost possession to Wongani Kaponya in a dangerous area before he deliberately committed a foul to cover up his mess and pick up a yellow card.

Mapemba took the resulting free-kick but despite a decent effort, goalkeeper Noel Phiri was alert to make a vital save, preventing his side from going down.

Reacting to the run of things, Mapopa Msukwa threw in Sebastian Chinsomba for Prince Kajole and soon after that made a triple change that helped his side withstand our pressure up to the final whistle. 0-0 it finished on the day and 2-0 on aggregate.

What it means

Following Wednesday’s result, the champions have now surrendered the league title. Ntopwa and FOMO will now look to inherit the throne with a win in the final on 4th February at Kamuzu Stadium.

Having participated in five competitions across the 2023-2024 season, Bullets Reserves will only have the Aubrey Dimba Trophy in their cabinet.

Chatama’s post-match reaction

“It was a very good game. Firstly, I have to appreciate my boys, they showed that they did what I told them to do only that we did not get the goals. The chances we created we did not use them. Our friends came with a game plan but it was the first leg that cost us. This has happened and let us accept and prepare for the next season.”

Next

What follows for our youngsters now is the fight for the third-place finish when they face Zomba Air Base on 4th February.

Starting Xl

Joel Ngwira; Kondwani Chirwa, Mussah Bwanali, Chifundo Sapuwa, Limbani Kutambe; Sladge Sanudi, Oscar Petro, Lyton Chinong’one; Macray Chiwaya, Wongani Kaponya, Chrispin Mapemba

Subs

Ganizani Banda, Hadji Steven, Alex Msiska, Gift Jossam, Blessings Kanowa, Francis Malikebu, Samuel Luka

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