10 January 2019

Namibia: Fixture Pile Up As MTC Premiership Resumes

THE Namibia Premier League resumes when Citizens take on Tigers in a Round 8 match at the Sam Nujoma Stadium on Thursday night, but a congested fixture list looms for many of the teams.

Due to matches being postponed during the first round, several teams will now have fixtures piled up in a busy period over the next week, with matches taking place each day for the whole of next week.

Several teams have been dealt tough assignments, none more so than struggling Orlando Pirates who will now have to play three matches within seven days.

They host Eleven Arrows at the Sam Nujoma Stadium on Sunday, and then two days later host Okahandja United at the same venue, before travelling to Rundu to take on Julinho Sporting four days later.

Pirates have had a poor start to the season and after dropping down to second last on the log, with only one win in six matches, they fired Eric Muinjo as coach towards the end of last year.

Lucky Kakuva who has been appointed in his place is, however, determined to take on the challenge to improve their position.

"The fixture list is very tight, it doesn't make sense and I'm not happy about it. We have to play three matches in a week and it's a precarious situation, but it's also a good challenge for me to see if I can add value and improve Pirates' position," he said.

Despite their poor log position, Kakuva remained confident.

"These next few matches are going to be crucial, but it's still early in the season and we have a good spirit in the team so we are approaching them with confidence," he said.

Kakuva, however, added that he would have to bring in some experienced reinforcements when the transfer window opens again.

"We need to reinforce the team in certain departments with experienced players. We have a lot of talented young players, but they struggle to remain consistent and we need experienced players for that consistency. I'll definitely sign up some new players in the new transfer window, but I'm not sure when that will be," he said.

Other teams that will have congested fixture lists over the next week include Eleven Arrows who have to play three matches within six days; and Black Africa and Okahandja United who each have to play two matches within four days.

But the team that will eventually have to make up the biggest deficit in postponed matches is the defending champions African Stars. Due to their African Champions League and Confederations Cup commitments they have only played four matches to date while their eighth round match this weekend has once again been postponed due to their Confederations Cup match against Raja Casablanca on Saturday.

Black Africa and Mighty Gunners have, meanwhile, pulled away at the top of the log with a five point lead over the chasing pack. They are both on 16 points, while Life Fighters, Citizens and Young Brazilians are all on 11 points.

They are followed by Julinho Sporting on 10, Tura Magic on nine and Young African on eight points.

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