Monday, September 28, 2020

Ecco to re-write history books?

With only about eleven games left before the curtain falls on the 2006/2007 Mascom Premier League, Francistown based side, Ecco City Green looks set to re-write history books by becoming the first team from the northern part of the country to clinch it. ?Mamojadiski? as Ecco City are affectionately called by its die hard supporters, have opened a seven points? gap from the second positioned Mochudi Centre Chiefs following a 4-1 drubbing of the former on Sunday at the national stadium. Ecco now have 44 points while Centre Chiefs 37. Centre Chiefs had hoped for a victory over Ecco City to close an initial four point lead but all in vain.

Since the introduction of the elite league more than three decades ago no team from the north has won the league. Northern giants like Tafic and Tasc have been trying but could not. Even Selibe Phikwe based side; Nico United?s impressive form in recent years has not yielded any fruitful results. Tasc and Tafic only managed to win the lucrative Coca Cola cup. This time Ecco look determined and focused as they continue to register victories whether at home or away.

Although Ecco started the league well, but before Centre Chiefs game, they had lost two games consecutively and for that matter by the huge margin of three goals without reply. Fortunately they had already accumulated many points and victories by their near rivals such as Centre Chiefs, BDF XI and BMC did little to close in on them. After both losses, nothing now seems to be stopping Ecco City as they are back to their winning ways. Ecco City also proved that their first round controversial game against Chiefs in which they won 3-2 was not a fluke.
What is even interesting about Ecco City is that almost all their players are capable of scoring. Even when their top marksmen such as Malepa Bolelang and Mandlekosi Sibanda are having a bad day even defenders can rescue the team.
Against Chiefs, Ecco made their intentions known from the first whistle and it was not surprising when Bolelang opened a scoring board in the second minute of the game after Centre Chiefs defense was caught flatfooted. Chiefs on the other hand pilled pressure and it paid off eleven minutes later. They equalised via their workaholic midfielder Aaron Kale. Credit must however be given to Molathegi ?Teenage Podile. Podile who cut through Ecco City defense and his goal attempt was parried by goalkeeper Michael Onkutule and fell to the Zambian born Kale who made no mistake.

The goal on the other hand irked Ecco City that launched attacks from all angles. Towering Zimbabwean international, Sibanda was the thorn in Chiefs flesh. He opened up Chiefs defense to pave way for the fellow strikers to go for goals. Ecco City once again took the lead via Nicholas Mathare few minutes before recess. Matlhare capitalised on another defensive error and scored from a tight angle.

Eight minutes after recess, under 23 international, Tebogo Sembowa scored one of the brilliant goals to have ever been seen in the Premier League. Sembowa received the ball near the touchline and outside the 18th area. Centre Chiefs defenders together with the goalkeeper thought he was going for defense splitting cross; but he took a long straight shot that was even difficult for Chiefs goalie, Noah Maposa to handle.

The last nail in Chiefs coffin was in the 72nd minute when the ever green, Tshokolo Nkola netted in after receiving a pass from Sibandla. After receiving a pass unmarked, Nkola took his time and easily picked the spot before slotting in.

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Sunday Standard September 27 – 3 October

Digital copy of Sunday Standard issue of September 27 - 3 October, 2020.