Civo’s Super substitute, Ranken Mwale Saturday saved his team from an imminent defeat in the TNM Super League game when he levelled on 90th minute to salvage a 3-3 draw against Red Lions played at Civo Stadium in Area 9, Lilongwe.
Mwale has done it for the second time at Civo to come off the bench to get a goal and the first one was he scored to make it 2-1 against Silver Strikers in a Lilongwe derby.
Red Lions, who were on top of the log before Friday evening, have dropped to third position with 18 points from nine games while Silver Strikers are leading the pack with 19 points with the same number of games.
Surprise package, Ekwendeni Hammers are no second on the log with 19 points from nine games after beating Karonga United 1-3, they are at par with Silver on points only goal difference separate them.
Civo is now drifting away from the top spot, they have enjoyed for weeks as they have dropped four points after drawing 1-1 against Moyale Barracks last Sunday and against Red Lions 3-3.
They have failed to beat three army teams and all games have ended in draw include Kamuzu Barracks 0-0 but they remain unbeaten team in 2020/21 Super League season.
Civo went into lead three minutes into the game when Muhammad Silumba’s free kick outside the penalty box kissed the roof of the empty net after Reds defender, Chimwemwe Chidati has fouled Civo’s left midfielder, Dan Kumwenda.
Reds captain, Chikoti Chirwa levelled the scores six minutes later when he nodded home, Royal Bokosi’s free kick from the right flank of the southern goal beating Civo’s, keeper, Tione Tembo.
Red Lions took the lead in the 37th minute when Ronald Pangani’s hard and low when past, Civo keeper, Tembo from close range to make it 1-2.
Three minutes later, Silumba equalized to claim his second for the day when he eluded ball watching Reds defenders Chidati and Khumbo Banda before volleying it past unsteady, Reds goalie, Jacob Kaunda.
Red’s Paul Kansungwi increased the tally with two minutes to half time when he knocked home when Bokosi’s floated cross was set by Mathew Simbeye to make it 2-3.
The two teams went to break with Red Lions leading 2-3.
The second half the two teams played a balanced game but they were many stoppages with three Red lions players were stretched off thrice and this prompted the referee to added five minutes after regulation time.
Civo made a double substation after 60 minutes they brought in Mwale and Binwell Katinji for Innocent Tanganyika and Henry Msowoya and 14 minutes later they injected the services of Fletcher Bandawe Christopher Kumwembe for John Dambuleni and Raphael Phiri and the changes brought fire power.
With four minutes to time Reds rested their goal scorers Chirwa and Pangani for Humphreys Minadi and Stanley Duwe respectively
At the 90th minute mark, Civo’s right back, Mathews Zaulombo sent an inviting cross into the box in which Mwale nodded home beating advancing Reds Goalie, Kaunda for all am important goal for the servants.
Two minute into added time, Reds striker, Simbeye broke loose but he delivered a very weak shot into the palms of on charging Civo keeper, Tembo.
Red Lions star man, Royal Bokosi was named play of the month of December and went away with K30 000 cheque.
“It’s a blessing in disguise to us to salvage a draw. It was a tough game but we are happy we have secured a point in the last minutes of the games,” Civo coach Franco Ndawa said.
Ndawa, a former Red Lions player and coach, disclosed that four of his first eleven team players are nursing injuries and the players who were featured in their places did a good job.
Red Lions coach Nelson Chirwa said it was a good game and they played well against Civo at their backyard.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :