Cuca Tops have top-flight in sight

Cuca Tops are on course to win promotion to the Namibia Premier Football League. Photo: Contributed

Rundu club Cuca Tops are on the verge of securing their return to the top tier league but need positive results in their remaining North East First Division matches to realise their target.

Tops took over pole position over the weekend, after Oshikango Chiefs surrendered their lead courtesy of a defeat to Chief Santos.

Cuca Tops capitalised on their rival’s slip-up, beating Eastern Chiefs 2-0 on Saturday, courtesy of efforts from striker Gideon Minshew and winger Thimbonde Stanley.

The in-form Gideon was again on target on Sunday in another 2-0 win, this time over Black Hawks, as central defender Rengi Jason joined him on the score sheet.

The victories propelled Tops to 41 points, followed by Oshikango Chiefs on 39 and Ntunguru on 35 points in third place.

Cuca Tops will get promoted if they win their next two matches against Chief Santos on Saturday and Omuthiya United the following day, while hoping other results go their way.

Speaking to The Namibian Sport yesterday, Cuca Tops head coach Gundolf Mukoya said they were focused on getting over the finishing line first this weekend.

“We want to keep playing well, we are not taking it for granted, we want to win all the remaining three games,” he said.

Tops’ last game of the season will be against arch-rivals Rundu Chiefs at the Rundu Sports Stadium.

“We are under pressure but we are working on it. I’m telling the boys to be calm and keep the focus and train well. We are also telling them to avoid social media and the talks going on out there,” Mukoya said.

Chiefs Santos have the psychological advantage in the clash, having beaten Tops in their first meeting. Last season, Cuca Tops only managed to get a point from the two match-ups, with a stalemate at home coming after losing to Santos away.

Santos also denied Cuca Tops promotion back in 2017.

“It’s a good team [Chief Santos]. We are taking them very seriously. I told the boys all the games we are playing are like finals, we are putting in everything and we are training well,” Mukoya said.

He said returning to the Namibia Premier Football League was important for the club’s evolution and ambition, urging the team’s supporters to rally behind the boys.

“The last time we qualified was in 2002. That time I was still playing, so it’s very important,” said Mukoya.

“It’s going to assist us because when you qualify [for promotion], you get funds and playing in the premier league is different in terms of financing.”

Mukoya thanked the team’s supporters for being there from the beginning and even in tough times.

“We thank them and urge them to show up in numbers. We need that last push for this objective. If they come in numbers for these last three games, I believe we will do good,” he added.

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