Gurirab tops scoring charts

The first leg of the 2018/19 NPL season has produced a remarkable flurry of goals.

13 March 2019 | Sports

The race for the 2018/19 Namibia Premier League (NPL) title is a mouth-watering one, with Black Africa (BA) and African Stars leading the pack.

But so too is the race for this season's golden boot.

Life Fighters striker Issaskar Gurirab is the top goal scorer so far, with 11 goals, followed by McCartney Naweseb of Black Africa with 10 goals.

The 21-year-old Gurirab is a resident of Uis and regularly took part in smaller tournaments before joining the Otjiwarongo-based club.

According to Life Fighters coach Agnus Chabala, the sky is the limit for the player.

“I was told that there was a brilliant player in Uis. I informed my chairman who met with his family to bring him to the club. He trained with me and the first time I already saw the quality he possesses.

“I saw that he wasn't properly trained to perform at the top level and there were some concerns about that, but I told the player to believe in himself.

“I said that he will be a top player if he worked hard. His fitness was not up to scratch in his first match against Stars. He wanted to give up and return to Uis, but I refused. I told him to work hard and the results will follow,” Chabala said.

In his second match against Young African, the player came from the bench and went all out.

“He had 25 minutes to prove himself and the boy performed. His confidence was growing. In the third match against Unam he scored a hat-trick and since then goals are just coming from him,” added the coach.

Chabala said he is proud to see Gurirab being called up for the Brave Warriors training squad, together with Naweseb.

If they step up to the challenge, they might find themselves in the squad that will face Zambia in a critical African Cup of Nations (Afcon) qualifier on 23 March.

Julinho Sporting's Manuel Francisco is another striker to watch during the second leg of the NPL, and has so far scored eight goals. Citizens' Upengisa Ujaha, BA's Wendell Rudath and Stars' Crispin Mbewe are all on seven goals each.

Tura Magic's David Omseb and Junias Theophilus are both on six goals.

Stars' Roger Katjiteo and Wayne Esterhuizen of Young Brazilians are on five goals each.

Immanuel Heita (Black Africa), Asser Hara-Ramseb (Mighty Gunners), Lorenzo Majiedt (Okahandja United), Gerland Kaengurora (Okahandja United), Enrico Hoebeb (Blue Waters), Vincent Namiseb (Civics), Markie Muwana (Julinho Sporting) and Tara Katupose (Unam) have each recorded four goals each.

The previous season saw Stars' striker, Panduleni Nekundi finishing as the top goal scorer with 15 goals.

His exploits in front of goal also saw him being crowned the player of the season. The second leg of the NPL is expected to kick off after the international break.


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