By Duncan Kaonga
It does not rain but pours for northern region football teams as all of them which were competing in this year’s Carlsberg Cup have failed to progress to the quarterfinals of the competition.
Chitipa United, Moyale Barracks, Karonga United, Mchengautuba United and Ekwendeni Hammers football clubs (FC) were the teams carrying the hopes of northern region at national level but all failed to go through to the next level of the tournament.
Moyale Barracks FC were the biggest casualties as they were booted out of the cup by a southern region second tier side, Hangover United in post-match penalties.
Mchengautuba United and Ekwendeni Hammers faced top flight teams Azam Tigers and Blue Eagles respectively. Despite showing strong fighting spirit, they were all booted out of the competition.
Northern Region Football Association (NRFA) General Secretary, Masiya Nyasulu described the development a disaster to his association.
“It’s a disaster, we did not expect all our teams to be out of this cup in this round, more especially Moyale, this means that our performance has gone down,” said Nyasulu.
He added that despite the teams bowing out of the competition, he was impressed with the performance by the second tier teams and attributed the loss of Moyale to suspension of some of their players.
“They had shown character by forcing elite teams into post-match penalties with Blue Eagles by Ekwendeni Hammers and we saw Tigers playing Mchengautuba and they lost 2-0, so, we are almost there and it’s no mean achievement by the two teams,” he said.
He then encouraged the teams to display their skills to the maximum in the next competition (FISD Cup).
“We would still encourage our teams to fight, all is not lost as they still have time to show people what teams in the region are capable of delivering,” said Nyasulu.
He said was optimistic that all teams in region would survive in the elite league despite their performance.
“It’s not over until it’s over, if you look at the log table critically, one or two teams from this side can still upset the tables. Teams have bunched together, it’s just a matter of three or four straight wins, then we make it to the Top 8,” he said-Mana