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Match preview: Karonga vs Bullets

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FCB Nyasa Big Bullets return to TNM Super League action with a must-win game away to Karonga United on Wednesday afternoon.

With Silver Strikers coming to Blantyre on Sunday for the final league match of the season, a win is a must for Kalisto Pasuwa’s charges to end the Central Bankers’ hopes of snatching the title away from the defending champions.

Karonga is a venue where visitors have to battle harder to get results and Bullets know how important it is to win this tie as we eye our fifth consecutive league title.

The visitors, who were denied access to train at Karonga Stadium on Tuesday afternoon ahead of the encounter, should anticipate a hostile environment from the home fans, who are expected to come out in large numbers to make the would-be champions uncomfortable.

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On Sunday, our 3-2 victory over Blue Eagles in the Airtel Top 8 semifinal showdown in Lilongwe was Bullets’ first win in the last four games.

They played out to two 1-all draws with Mighty Mukuru Wanderers and Red Lions before a goalless draw away to Blue Eagles and a 1-0 loss away to Dedza Dynamos.

As for the opposition, their last league encounter was a defeat away to Mighty Tigers in Blantyre.

Head-to-head

From the previous nine meetings, Bullets have six wins, two draws and one loss.

The last encounter was in the opening round fixture this campaign and The People’s Team won 2-0 at Kamuzu Stadium.

Team news

Rabson Chiyenda will undergo a late fitness test to determine whether to be considered for the showdown.

Ernest Petro, who missed the last match against Blue Eagles in the cup for personal reasons, is back with the rest of the squad and available for selection against Karonga.

What Pasuwa said

“In the last five games that we have been playing when others are not playing, we are having a torrid time. The way we are being treated I can’t even explain it. But, on our side, we expect the players to be mentally ready regardless of the hostility they may face when playing away from home. They have to be ready by now. I know there is pressure from other forces. Some players are very young, but we need to grow up early to overcome such situations and grind results.

It’s an interesting game for us. Being an away team, we know the opposition can be very offensive, so we also need to contain them, and at the same time, we need to see how we can penetrate for us to get a result.

We have been pushing them to encourage them that it can be done. The only worry I have been crying every day is how we have played these games. We haven’t had enough time to rest, and we have been travelling long distances throughout. We load them mentally, and we load them physically, and that’s an area that we have been trying for us to get results coming.

Karonga United is not a team to undermine especially when they are playing at home. They are comfortable and very offensive at the same time. We need to be in the right sense of mind to create our own history [as we look to win another title]”.

How to follow the game

This afternoon’s clash with Karonga United will kick off at 15h00 and you can catch the action on Mpira TV and FIFA+. Alternatively, you can follow the match updates on our Facebook and Twitter channels.

Match officials

Referee: Mercy Kaira

Assistant Referee 1: Samuel Fudzulani

Assistant Referee 2: Piason Kamanga

Fourth Official: Rose Zimba

Match Assessor: Kaliyoto Ngosi

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