Police FC struggle as league title slips away

It may be too early to completely rule them out of the league title race. Only four matches have been played in the second round of the national league, but it looks pretty obvious that Police FC would not make a miraculous turnaround to stay in the race longer.

It may be too early to completely rule them out of the league title race. Only four matches have been played in the second round of the national league, but it looks pretty obvious that Police FC would not make a miraculous turnaround to stay in the race longer.

Andre Casa Mbungo and his men are aware of the fact that the title is not in their hand following a poor run of just two wins in the last ten matches, which has seen them fall 14 points behind leaders APR FC.

The law enforcers’ side has dropped to sixth position on the table, having won eight, drawn eight and lost five including against big guns: APR (2-1) and Rayon Sports (3-1).

Very few teams recover from 14 points behind and win the title. Already football pundits are putting their money on  the top two, APR and Rayon Sports as favourites to win the title.

Police’s current form is so bad that they would struggle to even finish in the top four, especially with teams like Mukura Victory Sports (3rd) and SC Kiyovu, in fourth place doing enough to hold onto their positions.

In the remaining nine fixtures, five of those will be played away.

Let us crunch some numbers; if Police win all the remaining 9 matches, which is fairly tricky, they would finish this season with 59 points. Assuming they wouldn’t lose a single point, which, again, is a far cry for a team that seem to be playing without any ambition at the moment. 

To surpass that score, APR would only need 13 points from nine games – or four wins and a draw. Rayon would need 14 points from their nine games. These statistics prove Mbungo and his men don’t have the chance of making history to end their league title drought, at least, this season.

In the last two seasons, Police have finished in the top four, with 46 and 47 points respectively. In the 2013/14 season, they finished with 14 wins, 5 draws and 7 defeats and in the last campaign; they won 7 games, and lost 2. However, that is because the league contained 14 games.

Look at it hard headily, the top two teams have beaten that mark and they are likely to extend the point gap on the chasing pack. Reigning Peace Cup champions, Police have fallen off the pace.

This season’s race for the title is turning into a two-horse race between defending champions APR and archrivals Rayon Sports, who just won the derby 4-0 on Tuesday to close the gap at the top to just one point, and also have a game in hand against Etincelles.

Third-placed Mukura VS remains the surprise package and title dark horse, but their run-in looks mischievous since they’re losing the grip on the chase.

Police fans may want to argue otherwise, but that may be just that, because looking at the way they have dropped points in the last 10 matches, finishing even in the top two and stand a chance to play in CAF Confederation Cup next year, is just a dream.

Injuries and exhaustion due to fewer days of resting between matches, has influenced Mbungo’s tactical changes and sometimes forcing him to play key matches without a full strength team.

editorial@newtimes.co.rw

 

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