Nkwazi set limit above sky
Published On March 9, 2016 » 2696 Views» By Bennet Simbeye » Columns, Sports
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By GWEN CHIPASULA –
HAVING established themselves as title challengers last season, Nkwazi had a good run last year finishing sixth on the MTN-FAZ Super League table, a feat the ‘Policemen’ want to beat this year by aiming for the title itself.
Nkwazi will also be out to ensure they stay afloat in the top flight league having been promoted and subsequently demoted 12 times from the top flight of the Zambian football league.
Fans were encouraged last year, predicting that demotion was nowhere near the team that managed to reach the Barclays Cup final before losing 2-0 to rivals Green Buffaloes.
This season promises to be yet another exciting year for Nkwazi who have made some reinforcements having lost some players in the transfer window.
Former Chipolopolo star Hichani Himoonde is one of the players tipped to light up the league after joining the team after a troubled spell at South African side Mamelodi Sundowns.
With Elijah Chikwanda as head coach who joined Nkwazi in 2014 from the Botswana Defence Force (BDF), being assisted by Albert Mpande, Nkwazi have so far performed well from the time he took over when the side was in Division One.
Stationed at Edwin Imboela Stadium and sponsored by the Zambia Police Service, Nkwazi believe they have a perfect mix of players ranging from police officers to civilians to give them the right attitude to see them through the year.
The club has registered 35 players some of whom are employed by the Police command, while others are ordinary citizens and will be led by inspirational Chipungu Musukuma.
Nkwazi had a target of avoiding relegation last year especially that they were just promoted.
It seems the team has a whole different story this year as they have promised to fight for the title.
Nkwazi’s greatest achievement was that of being able to compete in the final of the Barclays Cup, but the team wants to win the cup this year.
Club secretary Adrian Kashala expressed happiness with the performance of the team last season, adding that a spectacular 2016 was being expected from the team.
Nkwazi acquired players like Himonde, who came in as a free agent after his deal with Sundowns expired and has been signed on a one-year permanent deal.
Other new players include Nathan Bwalya from Zesco United on a one-year loan deal,and  Frank Chibuye, also on a one-year loan deal from Konkola Mine Police.
Derrick Mwansa from Power Dynamos on a two-year loan deal is back with the club, alongside Chishimba Changala, who was with Zesco United on a one-year loan deal.
Nkwazi has sold two players in Lottie Nyimbiri and Roderick Zimba, who have crossed to Red Arrows while negotiations are still ongoing to sell midfielder Gift Lukwesa.
Chikwanda said the team was hoping for a better 2016 and was confident that the title will be at Edwin Imboela Stadium at the end of the season.
“We just have to compete for the title this season and also play the Barclays Cup final this time around as we were so close to winning it last season,” Chikwanda said.
It will thus be interesting to see what Nkwazi will be able to offer the Zambian fans this season.
FACT BOX
Team: Nkwazi Football Club
Formation: 1978
Home Ground: Edwin Imboela
Capacity: 4,000
Sponsors: Zambia Police Service
Head coach: Elijah Chikwanda
Assistant: Albert Mpande
Chairperson: Christopher Kashita
Colours: Blue and White
Emblem: Eagle
Players in: Hichani Himoonde, Nathan Bwalya, Frank Chibuye
Players out: Lottie Nyimbiri, Roderick Zimba, Gift Lukwesa

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