Lusaka based Super League side Napsa Stars on Wednesday suffered a setback to their continental football ambitions when they lost by three goals to two at the hands of Kitwe giants, Nkana Football Club in a rescheduled week 11 encounter played at the Woodlands Stadium in Lusaka.
The Pensioners opened the scores through Thomas Banda in the 11th minute before Ghanaian defender Richard Ocran levelled matters for Nkana from the spot kick four minutes later. Kalampa were awarded a penalty after Napsa defender, Bornwell Silengo handled the ball in the penalty area.
Napsa continued to pile pressure on the visitors and eventually benefitted from the pressure when Austin Banda beat Nkana’s Allan Chibwe to give Napsa the lead in the 40th minute, and the two teams went to the halftime break.
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The second half, both teams started strong, it was Napsa who were pushing the agenda in the opening exchanges of the second half, Eric Yema continued to do his runs around the Nkana defense and was seen changing wings frequently. Nkana came back into the game through midfielder Yannick Mulenda in the 65th minute to level matters for the Kitwe side and the game opened up.
Duncan Otieno came off the bench to score the winner for Nkana heading in from a corner to ensure all the three points go to Kitwe.
Napsa coach Muhammad Fathi was happy with the way his played but believes loss of concentration especially during set pieces cost them the match.
“We played very well, took the lead twice, I think the concentration from free kicks,(bad) communication from the goalkeepers and the defense, I am not sure about the second goal it looked to be offside,” Fathi told the ZamFoot Crew.
Fathi, however, promised to push Napsa to a better position in their remaining two matches. Napsa will play MUZA this weekend before hosting log leaders Green Eagles on the last day of the campaign.
Nkana head coach Beston Chambeshi on the other hand said his side fought hard to beat the hosts, and his confident that his side is still in contention for a CAF Interclub slot.
“I think the boys have fought and we wanted this game very much, were we are on the log, we are not very safe but for this win we can lift up our heads and look forward for the next games,” Chambeshi said.
Nkana’s next match is against second placed Buildcon this Sunday at the Levy Mwanawasa Stadium and before playing Forest Rangers on Wednesday next week then close their campaign against Circuit City in Lusaka.