WINDHOEK- Enterprising goal-poacher Peter Shalulile will today be the alpha male of the Brave Warriors wolf pack when they face continental football minnows Eritrea in the 1st leg of their two-legged 2022 World Cup preliminary round qualifiers in Asmara, Eritrea.
Namibia’s Brave Warriors, which are currently ranked 30th in Africa and 121 in the world, will today be expected to deliver on the task at hand against continental football lightweights Eritrea, who are tail-enders in African rankings and 202 in the world.
The Warriors who left for Eritrea on Sunday, will today be boosted by the return of versatile defender Chris Katjiukua and experienced goalkeeper Virgil Vries, who were both dropped from Namibia’s final 2019 Africa Nations Cup (Afcon).
Speaking to the Namibia Football Association (NFA) website from Eritrean base, Brave Warriors interim head gaffer Bobby Samaria announced that South African-based striker Shalulile, who plays for Highlands Park, will captain the team and will be deputised by Awilo Stephanus.
“The players are in high spirit and eager to go out tomorrow (today) to represent our country to the best of their ability. Fighting for positions is extremely intense and with the quality Namibia possess we are spoiled for choice. All we need to do is to find the right balance with respect to the composition of the team,” said Samaria, who expressed his satisfaction with the healthy competition in the team.
The coach adds that “Eritrea is a closed book but ranking will not play a role tomorrow because it all depends on the form on the day.”
The team only had two training session at the artificial turf of the National Stadium in Asmara, Eritrea, and the return leg of the match is next Tuesday at the Windhoek’s Sam Nujoma Stadium.
Namibia’s 23-man squad in Asmara: Virgil Vries (Unattached), Loydt Kazapua (Baroka FC, SA), Larry Horaeb ( Tura Magic), Aprocious Petrus (Eleven Arrows), Ratanda Mbazuvara, Ivan Kamberipa, Obrey Amseb, Marcel Papama (all African Stars), Dynamo Fredericks, Vitapi Ngaruka, Immanuel Heita, Wendell Rudath ( all Black Africa), Llewelyn Stanley ( Tigers), Elmo Kambindu (Mighty Gunners), Gregory Aukumeb (Blue Waters), Willy Stephanus ( Lusaka Dynamos, Zambia), Peter Shalulile ( Highlands Park, SA) Chris Katjiukua ( Black Leopards, SA), Benson Shilongo ( Ismaily, Egypt), Hendrik Somaeb (Unattached), Deon Hotto (Bidvest Wits, SA) , Joslin Kamatuka, and Teberius Lombard (Zanaco, Zambia).