8 February 2013

Tanzania: Feat Over Cameroon Just the Tonic Stars Need

TAIFA Stars put up a dominant performance against former African champions, Cameroon, to win 1-0 in an international friendly match at the National Stadium in Dar es Salaam on Wednesday to signal yet another bright future for the youthful team.

Team coach Kim Poulsen suggested prior to the game that the win would serve as a morale booster for his boys ahead of next month's World Cup qualifier against Morocco. And the boys responded perfectly to their coach's expectations. Stars should be more confident now after showing potential in recent matches by not only winning against big teams but also putting up more such good shows.

There were lots of positives to take from the Wednesday match, just like the way it was in the match against Zambia last December. It suggests an upward trend for the team and hopefully, the Stars can continue to rediscover the same team spirit that led them to perform better against tough opponents and get positive results in their forthcoming 2014 World Cup qualifier matches.

A cautious note though. This ascendancy shouldn't let the players be carried; they should not become big headed. They need to stay focused despite their recent good form. What the team needs now is to keep growing and aiming higher. There is no better prize they could give to Tanzanians other than qualifying for the AFCON and World Cup finals.

In fact, the team can as well take a leaf from the likes of Burkina Faso and Cape Verde at the ongoing Africa Cup of Nations in South Africa. The underdogs have come out of age to surprise and suppress giants and favourites such as Ivory Coast, Ghana, Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia.

Few had expected Burkina Faso to reach the final and Cape Verde to reach the second round of the continental championship. Apparently, Tanzania is capable of doing the same because it is not far apart compared to the Burkinabes and Cape Verde as far as the football standard is concerned.

Tanzania has missed out on the tournament for the past three decades. But these are positive signs that the country is beginning to see some light at the end of the tunnel. Confidence is a key for the Stars to climb up to the top layers of world football.

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