Match Preview: Dragon vs Bullets


FCB Nyasa Big Bullets returns to CAF Champions League football with an away game to Equatorial Guinea’s Dragon FC in the preliminary round first leg match at Estadio de Malabo on Sunday afternoon.

The People’s Team left Malawi on Thursday and arrived in Malabo 24 hours later, and went on to have the first training session on the same day of arrival.

It is our first-ever visit to this Spanish-speaking Central African nation in the hunt for victory in our quest to reach the next phase of the CAF Champions League this campaign.

This outing in Malabo is Bullets’ sixth attempt in Africa’s biggest club competition since the 2015 edition as Kalisto Pasuwa’s men will be looking to progress to the second round and possibly qualify for group stages for the first time since the 2004 campaign.

In the last four of the five previous attempts, Bullets were knocked out in the first leg, apart from the 2015 season in which they advanced to the second round only to be knocked out by the Sudanese giants, Al Hilal.

As for Sunday afternoon’s opponents, this will be the second attempt in a continental club competition following their last participation in 2010.

The recent records show that they got eliminated by FC Leopards of Kenya in the CAF Confederations Cup, losing the first leg 4-0 in Kenya before winning 3-2 at home to lose 6-3 on aggregate.

Unlike Bullets, Dragon FC has no major history in the continental club competition.

Form Guide

Bullets are going into this match straight from their 3-0 TNM Super League win over Extreme FC six days ago.

Maule left Malawi whilst holding the top position over Silver Strikers and Chitipa United, but this could change if these two teams register wins in their subsequent league assignments in the absence of the defending champions who will return to domestic competitions next month.

As for our opposition in the CAF Champions League, they are the champions of Equatorial Guinea for the 2022/23 season.

Their league format has 24 teams, twelve each from the capital Malabo and Bata, where the four best teams will come out and fight for the championship.

Cano Sport Academy from Malabo finished as runners-up and they are in the Confederations Cup where they were drawn against Zambia’s Maestro United.

The league in Equatorial Guinea ended in June and the new campaign is expected to start in October.


Sunday’s encounter will be the first-ever meeting between the two teams.

Team News

Pasuwa has travelled with a 23-player squad, with four of his key players left behind due to injuries.

Mike Mkwate, Stanley Billiat, Alick Lungu and Hassan Kajoke are all injured and will not play any role in Malabo.

There was also an injury concern for captain Precious Sambani who struggled with his muscles last week, but he has travelled and will undergo a late fitness test to determine if he will be fit to play on Sunday.

Bullets are expected to return home on Tuesday before proceeding to Lilongwe for the second-leg tie at Bingu National Stadium on Sunday.

The winner between the two teams will progress to the next round where they will face DRC’s TP Mazembe for a place in the group stages.

How we have previously fared in the CAF Champions League:


Fomboni 0-1 FCB Nyasa Big Bullets

FCB Nyasa Big Bullets 2-2 Fomboni

Bullets proceeded to the next stage and faced AL Hilal of Sudan.

First leg

Al Hilal 4-0 FCB Nyasa Big Bullets

FCB Nyasa Big Bullets 1-1 AL Hilal


Gor Mahia 1-0 FCB Nyasa Big Bullets

FCB Nyasa Big Bullets 1-0 Gor Mahia

Bullets lost 4-3 on penalties.


FCB Nyasa Big Bullets 0-0 Platinum FC

Platinum FC 3-2 FCB Nyasa Big Bullets


Amazulu FC 0-1 FCB Nyasa Big Bullets

FCB Nyasa Big Bullets 1-3 Amazulu FC


FCB Nyasa Big Bullets 0-2 Simba SC

Simba SC 2-0 FCB Nyasa Big Bullets

From the statistics, Bullets’ heaviest defeat in the Champions League was in the 2022/23 season, losing to Simba SC 4-0 in the two-legged contest.

What Pasuwa said ahead of the match

“We don’t know much about our opponents. As a coach, I have faced Equatorial Guinea as a [Zimbabwe] national team coach but not Dragon FC as a club. We will do everything to get the result and return home with an advantage heading into the second leg.”

How to follow the game

The game will kick off at 17h00 Malawian time and you can catch the match updates on our Facebook and Twitter channels.

Match officials

West African officials will be in charge of our away first-leg tie at the Estadio de Malabo on Sunday afternoon, with the three referees and the fourth official coming from Congo and the commissioner from Togo.

Referee: Fitial charel Just Kokolo (Congo)

Assistant Referee 1: Prefina Jean Prislas Malanda (Congo)

Assistant Referee 2: Beaudrel Beaudrel Ntsele Roul (Congo)

Fourth Official: Chynel Geo Bango (Congo)

Match Assessor: Latre-Kayi Edzona Lawson-Hogban (Togo)

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