Three-horse title race enters the home straight 

Petrus Naunyango in action for Khomas Nampol during their 3-0 victory against Okakarara Young Warriors on Friday. Photo: Helge Schütz

The Debmarine Namibia Premiership title race is well and truly on as three clubs battle it out for top honours, entering the final home straight. 

Khomas Nampol collected maximum points over the weekend to move to within two points of log leaders African Stars, while FC Ongos are also in the running, a further two points behind. 

On Friday, Khomas Nampol opened their account with a 3-0 victory against Okakarara Young Warriors at Windhoek’s Independence Stadium. Nampol’s young striker Rewaldo Prins opened the scoring in the first half when he pounced onto a poor clearance to put the ball into an empty net, while Petrus Naunyango made it 2-0 with agreat shot from the edge of the box. 

Prins put the issue beyond doubt with his second goal midway through the second half, displaying some great ball control as he chipped the ball over Okakarara’s goalie Sitale Nyambe into an empty net.

On Sunday, Khomas Nampol were rather fortunate to beat Julinho Sporting 3-2 at the same venue after a bizarre goal by their goalie sealed their victory. 

Prins was once again in great form, giving Khomas Nampol the lead after barely a minute when he put on the pace and raced clear to put the ball into an empty net. 

Just before halftime Prins was at it again, as Nampol were awarded a penalty for a foul in the box and he scored from the spot. 

Julinho, however, launched a great comeback as Natherny Ngonga opened their scoring with a classy backflick, while Rovein Tjihumba pulled them level when he followed up a rebound from a freekick.  

The momentum was now with Julinho, but their hopes were dashed when Nampol regained the lead against the run of play. 

Their goalie Ngatangue Ruhaka booted the ball upfield and the ball took an awkward bounce, going high over Julinho’s goalie, Kevin Gamsab into an empty net. It was a cruel blow for Julinho and Nampol coach Fortune Eichab acknowledged that they were lucky. 

“In the second half we relaxed and allowed Julinho to come back into the game, which was unneccessary and these things will cost you in football. But we were lucky today, we scored a lucky goal to pick up three points, but sometimes you need luck in football. We are glad to pick up three points today and a maximum six points over the weekend. I’m proud of these magnificent boys, and we are working very hard to finish amongst the top teams,” he said. 

Stars, meanwhile dropped points after losing 1-0 to Mighty Gunners at Otjiwarongo on Sunday, following a 1-0 victory against Eeshoke Chula Chula at Oshakati on Saturday. 

They still lead the log on 53 points from 25 matches, but Nampol are now just two points behind on 51, while FC Ongos are also within touching distance on 49 points. Ongos lost 3-1 to Unam on Friday, but bounced back with a 1-0 victory against Life Fighters on Sunday, and with a game in hand on both Stars and Nampol, they are still firmly in the title race. 

It was a good weekend for Mighty Gunners, who also beat Orlando Pirates 2-1 on Saturday to move up to fourth position on 39 points.

Okahandja United are fifth on 38 points after collecting two 1-1 home draws against Civics and Tigers, while Eeshoke Chula Chula are sixth on 37 points, after beating Orlando Pirates 1-0 on Sunday. 

Tigers moved up to seventh place on 36 points after beating Blue Waters 2-1 on Sunday, while it was a good weekend for Unam who beat FC Ongos 3-1 and Young African 1-0 to move up to eighth position on 35 points.

Life Fighters remain at the bottom of the log on 16 points after two 1-0 defeats to FC Ongos and Young African, while Orlando Pirates and Okakarara Young Warriors are also in the danger zone on 20 points each. 

Julinho on 21 and Civics on 24 points, are however, not out of danger, and with only five rounds remaining, the relegation battle is bound to be as fierce as the title race. 

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