For newly promoted clubs, surviving in the MTC/Namibia Premier League (NPL) is never an easy task, but newly promoted Touch and Go F.C has it that, it will pull all stops to remain in top flight football for seasons to come.
Touch and Go were firstly promoted to the NPL in 2000/01 season together with Rundu based club Cuca Tops but both clubs were relegated at the end of the same season.
The club was also relegated from top flight football in the 2005/06 season after gaining promotion the previous year and the club is ready to break that barrier by becoming an established premier league material for many years to come, according to its Pubic Relation Officer (PRO) Jefta Gaoab.
“In the past we were relegated because we didn’t have the necessary resources but we will try this time around to survive with the little we have. Our return to the NPL clearly stressed the potential and talent amongst the players, but only the lack of a sponsor to complement their efforts. Maybe we should even change the name to Touch and Stay, rather than Touch and Go,” said Gaoab.
Rewrite the statistics
The team has vowed that it will rewrite the statistics. In the past five seasons, only five clubs have managed to survive top flight football in their first season with the Otavi club looking to become the sixth side to do so.
Both Mighty Gunners and Hotspurs survived their first season in the premier league in 2010/11.
Gunners was then relegated to the first division at the end of the 2011/13 season. The team is now set to take another shot at the league title during the forthcoming 2014/15 season.
Hotspurs were relegated to the first division at the end of the 2011/12 season, and is yet to make a comeback.
Ru-Town based Rundu Chiefs, seemingly had a run in with misfortune. The team was relegated from the premier league last season, after enjoying a two season spell in top flight football. The same can however not be said for Tura Magic, which gained gained promotion to the NPL in the 2012/13 season, as they are now going into their third season.
.Also going into a third spell in the country’s top football league is United Stars.
Home ground advantage
All of Touch and Go’s next three matches will take place at home.
Gaoab said that the club’s survival lies on their home form, something the club had failed to do in the past.
“It will be important to win all our home games. But in football there is no more a thing of a small team,” he said.
Goaob said that the club will go into the new season with confidence following some good pre-season matches in August and September.
“We won the four nations cup tournament which was held in Tsumeb, against other newly promoted sides like, Benfica, Citizens and Mighty Gunners. We beat Benfica 3-1 in the first match. We also beat Citizens 3-0 but lost the last match against Mighty Gunners 2-1. We also played against Blue Waters in Walvis Bay and we won 1-0. Our aim is survival but a good run in the cup will be a bonus,” said Goaob.
Media reports suggested that Touch and Go is interested in procuring the services of African Stars midfielder Bradley ‘Asprilla’ Wermann and his former teammate Rudie Louw.
But according to Goaob, talks of the two players joining the team did crop up in the past but they have since gone cold.
“There were talks in the past about the two players joining us. I am not sure if they are still interested in joining the club. . In any case we have a good team already that comprises of promising young players, mostly under the age of 25. It is up to the technical staff to decide as to whether they want the players or not. It also depends on the budget, but our doors remain open for those who want to join,” said Goaob.
Goaob said the doors are still open for new players to join up with the club, despite saying that the club has enough depth to compete against the best in the country.