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Two-horse race in Zambian league

05 Aug, 2020 - 00:08 0 Views

The Herald

LUSAKA. — Although there are still six sides with a mathematical chance of winning the Zambia Super League title, it is looking ever more likely it will be a two-horse race in the final round of fixtures.

Relegated Nakambala Leopards’ decision not to honour their remaining matches this season is likely to stand today, when they should have been meeting second-placed Nkana FC.

With that game likely to end in a walkover win for the latter, it will take them to 50 points and mean there is only one team that will be able to catch them at the top of the table — leaders NAPSA Stars.

In that scenario, Stars would need a victory at fourth-placed Forest Rangers, who would also have been in contention but for Leopards’ decision to fall on their sword.

It will certainly be no easy task away from home, even if Rangers have been weakened by a number of Covid-19 positive tests.

Stars have won on two of their previous three visits to Ndola, and come into the game following a solid 2-0 win over Buildcon last Friday.

Even if Leopards do pitch up to play Nkana today, they have not trained since lockdown and will; be in terrible shape, no match it would seem for their in-form opponents.

Stars are, of course, chasing a first ever Super League title win, while Nkana are looking to add to their record 12 titles, the last of which came in 2013 before Zesco United largely took dominance of the domestic scene.

Whatever happens in the championship race, it would appear that Nkana have secured a berth in the 2020/21 CAF Champions League competition, with the top two sides qualifying for the competition.

A win for Rangers over NAPSA Stars would see them catapult their opponents and potentially take the other spot, though that would depend on whether Zesco United get victory as well at home to Red Arrows tomorrow.

The teams that finish third and fourth will enter the 2020/21 CAF Confederation Cup, ad a number more sides remain in contention for that.

Also today, Buildcon are due to host Green Buffaloes, while Kabwe Warriors clash with Power Dynamos, and Nkwazi meet Kansanshi Dynamos.

Tomorrow, Green Eagles take on Lusaka Dynamos, while Mufulira Wanderers are likely to get a walkover against Kabwe YSA, though both clubs are already relegated.

Zanaco will hope for another win when they host Lumwana Radiants.

Going into the final round of matches, NAPSA lead the Super League with 48 points from their 26 games and a +15 goal-difference, followed by Nkana FC (47, +14), Zesco United (46, +15), Forest Rangers (46, +9), Zanaco (45, +14) and Green Eagles (45, +13). — Mzansi Football.

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