Blue Waters’ clashes versus Mighty Gunners and Eeshoke Chula Chula at Swakopmund are arguably the pick of the matchups this weekend when the Namibia Premier Football League resumes following the mid-season recess.
Tomorrow, Omeya will be out to avenge a first round defeat to Gunners, who beat them 2-1 at Otjiwarongo to close off the opening half of the season in December.
That loss was preceded by a goalless stalemate against Sunday’s opponents Chula Chula at Oshakati.
In fact, Blue Waters have won only one of their last five clashes and can ill-afford more slip-ups if they still harbour ambitions of being in the title race. They trail champions and log leaders African Stars by 11 points and are one behind fourth-placed Chula Chula, who have so far amassed a healthy 25 points from 15 matches in their debut topflight campaign.
The inconsistent but game Gunners lie in mid-table, with 19 points to their name.
Blue Waters reacquired striker Junior Petrus following a short stint at Liria Prizren in the Kosovo Superleague to address their lack of firepower.
Football“The team used the break to take stock of the shortcomings we had during the first round and to subsequently take steps to correct those, in order to strengthen the team,” said Blue Waters’ marketing manager Mathias Haufiku.
“One of our biggest challenges on the pitch was the wastage of goal scoring opportunities, we were simply not clinical enough despite creating an abundance of chances.
“We are pleased to announce that Junior Petrus has rejoined the team. He is a proven forward and knows our league very well, so we expect his addition to improve the team on the attacking front.”
Haufiku said the club has worked on improving the players’ concentration as they appeared to switch off during the lost or drawn matches.
“As far as inconsistency is concerned, the fact that we are the team that played most of the first round games away from home also played a role, coupled with the wastage of chances,” Haufiku said.
“The target for this weekend is to collect maximum points at home and we urge our legion of fans to come out in numbers to support the team.”
Also in action tomorrow, Young African (YA) and Young Brazilians (YB) battle in a mid-table clash at Gobabis’ Legare Stadium, with both teams eager to move higher up the table. They drew 1-1 stalemate towards the end of the first round.
The Brazilians from Karasburg head into the clash with the better form, having picked up 10 points in their last five outings. A 2-1 loss to title contenders Ongos in their last game of 2023 was only time they failed to garner points.
YA have also only lost once in five matches, but have recorded three draws and a solitary win during that run.
On Sunday, YB face third-placed Ongos in Windhoek, with YA taking on second-placed Khomas Nampol, who have so far looked like the team to topple the champions.
Fellow premiership newcomers Chula Chula have hogged the limelight due to their vociferous large following, which has seen rivals inflate their ticket prices when they face them, but Nampol’s incredible and consistent start to the season is arguably more impressive. Victory for Nampol would see them leapfrog Stars to lead by a point.
Stars are not in action this weekend, with their matches against Civics and Tigers being postponed indefinitely.
Other postponed fixtures include Ongos versus Nampol which was scheduled for today; Tigers against Orlando Pirates tomorrow; and Civics’ showdown with Orlando Pirates on Sunday. Tomorrow’s schedule also has Okahandja United at home to Chula Chula, while Unam face Julinho at Grootfontein, Life Fighters host their derby with Okakarara Young Warriors at Otjiwarongo. Okahandja welcome Gunners on Sunday, with Fighters taking on Julinho and Okakakara hosting Unam.
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