Dar es Salaam — A mammoth crowd is expected at the National Stadium today when Mainland giants Simba face Ghana's Asante Kotoko in a ground-breaking pre-season match.
The much anticipated clash is among various activities lined up to spice up Simba Day, a special day for the Msimbazi Reds as they mark 83 years of their existence.
Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa will grace what promises to be an exciting match.
After days of anxiety among fans, Asante Kotoko, one of the leading clubs in Africa, arrived in the country yesterday for the game.
The Ghanaian giants have been champions of the Ghana Premier League a record 23 times, and have won the Caf Champions League twice.
Simba, who have bolstered their squad significantly ahead of the new Mainland Premier League season, will be playing their first match since returning from Turkey, where they had camped for two weeks.
The Msimbazi Street team head coach, Patrick Aussems, said yesterday that his players were in high spirits, looking forward to down the West Africans. "Asante Kotoko are a good team but we are ready for the challenge," said Aussems.
Kotoko, who sit fourth in the Ghana Premier League table with 24 points in the Premier League, boast a formidable squad.
The West African team coach, Paa Kwesi Fabim, has expressed optimism that today's encounter would produce results for his team.
According to Fabim, his team comprises five national team players.
Simba, officially formed in 1936, will use the occasion to officially introduce their new signings and unveil their new kits for the new season.
For the Mainland champions, today's clash will also serve as a beneficial warm-up for Simba ahead of the Community Shield match against Mtibwa Sugar.
The match slated for August 18 at the CCM Kirumba Stadium in Mwanza, will mark the start of the Mainland Premier League, which kicks off on August 22.