Clinical Stars take charge

Quinton van Staden of Young Brazilians (centre) and Ronald Ketjijere and Joseph Lungu of African Stars in action during Stars’ 10-0 victory on Saturday. Photo: Helge Schütz

African Stars remained at the top of the Debmarine Namibia Premiership log after thrashing Young Brazilians 10-0 on Saturday, but FC Ongos and Khomas Nampol are in hot pursuit. 

Stars lead the log on 29 points, just ahead of FC Ongos on goal difference, although they have a game in hand, while third-placed Khomas Nampol on 25 points have two games in hand. Both those games take place this week, with Nampol playing Orlando Pirates tonight and African Stars on Friday, in a match that could play a big role in the title race. 

On Saturday, though, Stars were in a different class as they turned on the style with a clinical performance against Young Brazilians.

They took the lead after only three minutes when Uetuuru Kambato was fouled in the box, but he got up to put the spot kick away. Young Brazilians managed to keep Stars at bay for a while, but their defence gradually crumbled against some slick, one-touch passes by Stars.

Abram Tjahikika made it 2-0 with a great freekick on 34 minutes, while Kambato made it 3-0 at halftime after some superb passing moves carved the Brazilians’ defence wide open.

Stars upped the tempo after the break and more goals followed as they started running rings around the hapless Brazilians. 

Kambato went on to score four goals in total, while Tjihikika added two, and Awilo Stephanus, Youssouf Ibroihim, Maharero Ndjiraere, Edmund Kambanda and Vitapi Ngaruka one goal each. 

It was Stars’ third consecutive victory since Marvin Mbakera returned to the hot seat in place of Prince Koffie, and he congratulated his team on a clinical performance. 

“The objective was to get three points, it was very important for us to go back to the top of the table, but we achieved that so congratulations to the boys. I think the support behind the team is massive now, from management as well, so we must just continue to pull it and make sure that we get into our space,” he said. 

“We are not yet there, but the boys have worked tremendously hard during the week, and yes, the result was favourable. We were quite clinical today, and those are the things that one is expecting each moment of the game, just to have that precision, so I can only congratulate these magnificent players,” he added.

Ongos, meanwhile, remained on their heels with a 2-0 win against Orlando Pirates on Friday, but dropped points when they were held 1-1 by Civics on Sunday. They are now level with Stars on 29 points, but have played an extra match, but captain Junias Theophilus, who scored their goal against Civics, was not too worried about the dropped points.  

“It was not an easy game, we tried to put the ball down and play and we had so many chances, but couldn’t convert, so it was one of those games. It’s two points lost, but we take the point – at least we didn’t lose and we are still in the title race. So now we’ll go back to the drawing board and train hard for the next one,” he said. 

“African Stars are obviously the champions, so they have a point to prove, but we will definitely not let them have an easy ride. We will meet again in the second round and I think that’s going to be a very important game, so we will just go back to the drawing board and train hard,” he added. 

Blue Waters remain fourth on 23 points after picking up four points at home in Walvis Bay. 

On Saturday they beat Julinho Sporting 3-1 with Erastus Kulula, Issaskar Gurirab and Sam Ndahangwapo scoring their goals, while they were held to a goalless draw by Life Fighters the next day. 

Eeshoke Chula Chula had a good weekend, collecting maximum points at home with two 1-0 victories against Unam and Okakarara Young Warriors, and are now fifth on the log on 21 points.

Young African are sixth on 18 points after beating Civics 1-0 and drawing 1-1 against Tigers, while Okahandja United are seventh on 18 points, after beating Life Fighters 2-1, but losing 3-0 to Julinho. 

Tigers are eighth on 17 points, while Mighty Gunners, who were held to two goalless draws at home against Unam and Okakarara Young Warriors, are ninth on 15 points. 

Young Brazilians, meanwhile, bounced back from their Stars drubbing to beat Orlando Pirates 4-0, to move up to 12th position on 13 points, while Pirates are now rock bottom on five points from 12 matches. 

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