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‘Pick of the litter’

Coaches split over player of the season

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HIGHLY RATED—Chirwa

By Isaac Salima:

Some TNM Super League coaches have expressed different opinions on who can scoop the player of the season award.

The Super League of Malawi (Sulom) last month tasked 32 football coaches and 140 journalists to nominate this year’s player of the season, best goalkeeper, best defender and best midfielder.

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Malawi News Sport took it to Super League teams coaches and majority of them went for Nyasa Big Bullets’ right back Gomezgani Chirwa.

Out of 14 coaches we contacted, six think that Chirwa deserves the award while the rest are split.

Moyale’s Pritchard Mwansa, Mike Kumanga for Red Lions, Albert Mpinganjira for Mighty Mukuru Wanderers, Blue Eagles’ Eliya Kananji, former Civil Service United coach Franco Ndawa and Silver Strikers assistant coach Etison Kadenge Mwafulirwa all put their vote on Chirwa.

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“He had a great season. He did what many defenders rarely do. He defended well, orchestrated attacks, supplied in the box and scored vital goals. He took me to old days of Harry Waya,” Ndawa said.

Chitipa United coach Christopher Nyambose, Kondwani Mwalweni of TN Stars and Ekwendeni United mentor Gilbert Chirwa went for Bullets midfielder Patrick Mwaungulu.

The People’s Team had lion’s share of nominations as Trevor Kajawa of Mighty Wakawaka Tigers, Blessings Kawanga who is assistant coach for Kamuzu Barracks were for league golden boot winner Babatunde Adepoju.

Relegated Sable Farming coach Macdonald Mtemera thinks that Bullets’ utility midfielder Ernest Petro had a great season and should win the award while Jimmy Butao of Rumphi United put his money on last season’s player of the year winner and Bullets midfield workhorse Chimwemwe Idana to retain the accolade.

Mafco coach Stereo Gondwe said Wanderers forward Muhamad Sulumba defied all odds and did wonders in the league and that she hould win the award.

Other coaches also went for Blue Eagles’ forward Gaddie Chirwa who is talk of the moment and Miracle Gabeya as second choice.

Bullets coach Kalisto Pasuwa did not respond to our WhatsApp message while Dedza Dynamos mentor Dan Dzinkambani was undecided.

Meanwhile, Mwafulirwa, who voted for Chirwa, however said player of the season winner should be dictated by the number of man of the match awards one accumulates.

“I think the best way is to take a player who won most of the man of the match awards because that means that player was outstanding,” Mwafulirwa said.

We also sought the opinion of Flames coach Mario Marian Marinica who has followed the league from the start.

Marinica also went for Chirwa.

If Chirwa, a former Civil Service Unite player, wins the prize, he will end the year on a very high note.

Chirwa was last week selected as player of the season during Bullets Players Awards ceremony that took place in Blantyre.

The combative right winger last week clinched the inaugural goal of the month award for November which an insurance firm Precious Medical International has been sponsoring.

Chirwa has been praised for his defending and overlapping skills and scored seven goals this season to help Bullets defend the league and win the FDH Bank Cup.

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