By Punch Chama
When the Barclays Cup Semi finalists were known there was a suggestion by a section of football fans in Zambia that the matchup between Nkana Fc and Power Dynamos on the 20th of October at Woodlands Stadium would not be packed and would receive little attention due to the fact that there was a big Premier league match between Chelsea and Manchester United on the same day.
While Zambia has a huge Premier League fanbase the Kitwe Derby has always defied the odds by being packed even when their is a big Premier League match but this was a test given that the Kitwe Derby would be held 300 kilometers from its original town and province.
Another factor was that in the 2014 edition of the Barclays Cup Quaterfinals was held in Lusaka with the Kitwe Derby being played at Nkoloma Stadium and the stadium wasn’t full though on that day it kicked off at 13:00 as the first of the double headers.
All these issues weighed in as there was a sense of anxiety to see whether or not Woodlands Stadium would be packed and fans did not disappoint as the Grandstand and several other parts of the Stadium were full by 14:00 which was well into the first half of Manchester United vs Chelsea.
Fans continued to pour in their thousands from within Lusaka and outsidr and by 15:15 it was a packed house in anicipation of the match and what happened on the pitch did not dissapoint as their was drama, action, emotions, great goals and controversies which have continued to dominate Social Media even a day after the match.
With the 13,000 Capacity Woodlands Stadium filled and some even failing to get in it shows that interest in the Zambian League continues to grow and is again reaching the levels of the 1990s where a match between clubs could fill up the National Stadium.