Mufulira Wanderers boosted their chances of surviving relegation with a 1-0 victory over Zesco United in a Week 33 match played at Shinde Stadium on Sunday.
Wanderers are technically safe from relegation but can still finish in 15th position, which could have them demoted should Nchanga Rangers finish above them and also win their appeal against a Disciplinary Committee decision which had them relegated a fortnight ago.
Wanderers started brightly and were quickly in front when Rahim Osumanu fired home in the 4th minute, lobbing the ball past Zesco United goalkeeper Jacob Banda from the top of the box following good work from Joseph Kasongo and Joseph Sitali.
The visitors were limited to shooting from range in the opening exchanges but midway through the first half Jesse Were almost equalised after he was set up by Idris Mbombo but his low effort from the right flank went across the face of goal and behind for a goal kick.
For the hosts, Osumanu had good chance for his second goal when he skillfully chested Austin Banda’s floated delivery inside the box but his effort on the turn was weak and was easily picked by Banda.
In the early exchanges of the second half Zesco United controlled the match with their passing game but for all their work they were limited to shooting from range.
In the 59th minute, Mbombo almost capitalised on a miscued defensive clearance by Rodrick Iyambe but his placed effort went wide of target when it looked easier to score.
With the hosts controlling possession, Zesco United were made to work as they searched for the equaliser which never arrived as the Wanderers defence remained resolute and goalkeeper Robert Mwanza made vital saves when called upon.
Following the victory, Mufulira Wanderers moved to 11th position on the standings, level on 39 points with Napsa Stars(10th) and Nchanga Rangers (12th).
Their next match is against Red Arrows during the weekend of 3rd – 4th December.
The result also kept Zesco United in third position with 57 points which means that leaders Zanaco need four out of a maximum twelve points from their four remaining matches to win the league.