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Early team news ahead of Dedza Dynamos clash

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FCB Nyasa Big Bullets will be at home for a second successive week as we welcome Dedza Dynamos for TNM Super League action at Kamuzu Stadium on Saturday.

For several weeks, The People’s Team has been without several key players due to injuries and national team engagements.

Going into Matchweek 15, the defending champions will be without Alick Lungu, Frank Willard, Patrick Mwaungulu and Lanjesi Nkhoma, who are with Malawi at the COSAFA Senior Challenge in Durban, South Africa.

On Thursday, assistant coach Heston Munthali sat down with club media and provided the latest injury update, as four players returned to training after recovering from injuries.

Defender Clyde Senaji, midfielder Stanley Billiat and forward Maxwell Phodo are back on the training pitch after starting fitness training programs last week and are all responding well.

Senaji had a stress fracture in his right foot while Billiat was out with a knee injury and Phodo with a viral infection.

Defender Nickson Nyasulu, who has been on the sidelines following a knee injury in June, resumed full training and might be in contention for a place in the matchday squad on Saturday if certified fully fit by the end of the week.

Ernest Petro, who sustained a knee injury during our goalless draw away to Mighty Mukuru Wanderers a fortnight ago, is expected to be out of action for two extra weeks. Our number 10 missed the goalless draw against Tanzanian champions Young Africans in the friendly match on Independence Day and was also not available during the 3-0 TNM Super League home victory over Blue Eagles.

Mike Mkwate continues to remain on the sidelines after he sustained a tibiofibular fracture to his right leg during the Castel Challenge Cup launch against Silver Strikers in June at Bingu National Stadium.

Commenting on Saturday’s fixture against Dedza Dynamos, Munthali told us that the tie is yet another challenge to prove our title credentials as we face a side desperate for a result having collected a point from the possible nine points in their previous three matches.

“It’s a tricky fixture for us because our opponents haven’t won any game in the last three outings and they will come hard on us to bounce back. But we have been talking to our players to be focused and not underrate the visitors,” said Munthali. “The aim is for us to collect points to prove our title ambitions. We have to continue winning and this presents yet another opportunity to do that.”

In our previous fixture, The People’s Team had a tough first half against Blue Eagles in which we couldn’t keep the ball for long and struggled to win it back when out of possession.

But Munthali believes it was just one of those days where the opposition counter-pressed Bullets, saying Maule drew some positives, especially in the final half.

“If you can see whenever teams are playing against us at Kamuzu Stadium, they press us from the defence and if we lack confidence on a particular day, we struggle to keep the ball and we are caught off-guard hence failing to attack from the back into the transition.

“Against Eagles, that’s exactly what happened but we came out good in the second half where we moved from the midfield into the attack. We have also talked to the players to keep focus and play our game,” added Kalisto Pasuwa’s assistant.

He also reminded all the players to up their game, saying “They were signed for this moment” when most of the first-team starters are either injured or with the national team in South Africa.

“We are confident enough with these players because they signed for this moment. They need to step up the way they did last week against Eagles when they won us the points. We also rely on them to continue performing in the absence of the regulars [who are] with the national team and others on injuries. We signed more than thirty players for this moment.”

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