After just one game each for the 2017 TNM Super League season, and two for travellers Nyasa Big Bullets and Silver Strikers, Red Lions take the lead after scoring the highest number of goals in their 4-1 win over newly-promoted Blantyre United.
But will they maintain the status when the usual favourites pick themselves up from their slumber after a long break? Red Lions struggled last season in which they finished 10th but with this win I am sure they are bound to be very serious in their campaign, which has eluded them for far too long.
Mafco too, who were 5th last season, have their sights focused following their 1-0 win over Civo Sporting Club (formerly known as Epac). They share on points and goal difference with Wanderers (6th last season), Moyale (7th) and Dwangwa United (12th), who all also won by 1-0 margin.
Last season’s third-placed team Silver Strikers were on the road and came back with just two points following their draws with Wizards (0-0) and Azam Tigers (1-1) while 2016 runners-up Nyasa Big Bullets left Mzuzu for their base in Blantyre with a single point from their 0-0 draw with newly promoted Chitipa United and the 0-1 loss to Moyale.
I guess by now teams will be wary of the debutantes Chitipa United following their draw against such a giant like Bullets.
The other newly promoted teams stumbled in their first game when Blantyre United caved in against Red Lions by letting in four goals while Master Security lost 0-1 to Dwangwa United.
What will be very interesting for this season is the new breath of life that has been injected into the top flight football with the coming in of the Airtel Top 8 Cup to be competed for by the top eight teams of the TNM Super League.
The Airtel Top 8 kicks off this weekend with the quarterfinals and last season’s top eight are Kamuzu Barracks (1st), Nyasa Big Bullets (2nd), Silver Strikers (3rd), Blue Eagles (4th), Mafco (5th), Wanderers (6th), Moyale (7th) and Azam Tigers (8th).
The draw is that Silver Strikers host Nyasa Big Bullets at Bingu National Stadium while Mafco date Moyale Barracks at Chitowe — both games on Saturday — while on Sunday the champions Kamuzu Barracks face Blue Eagles at Civo Stadium and Mighty Be Forward Wanderers meet Azam Tigers at Balaka Stadium.
This is very good news and congratulations to Football Association of Malawi (Fam) and the Super League of Malawi (Sulom) for injecting this new excitement to our football.
Teams now have something more to fight for apart from eyeing the Super League title or trying to avoid relegation. Those that shall realise that their chances of winning the title are slim, they shall fight to be in the top eight and those outside shall battle to rise up the ladder and not miss the Airtel Top 8 Cup.
That shall create so much hype throughout the season and that’s very good for our football development.
I reminisce the exciting time of the BP Top 8 years back. It was something that we shouldn’t have lost because of violence that forced BP to withdraw their then lucrative sponsorship.
I plead with the fans never to exasperate Airtel like we did with BP (now called Puma). Let’s cherish this new development in our football and enjoy all the action.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :