TAIFA Stars w ill pitch a tw o-w eek camp in South Africa prior to their AFCON game against Lesotho, the Minister for Information, Culture, Arts and Sports Harrison Mw akyembe confirmed yesterday.
Stars face Lesotho on November 18th this year in group L fixture at Setsoto Stadium in Maseru after a successful 2-0 routing of Cape Verde at the National Stadium in Dar es Salaam.
The win in Lesotho would put them in a right path to the AFCON finals to be held in Cameroon. From four matches, Taifa Stars have reaped 5 points, winning a single match, drawing two games while losing once.
Under Nigerian Emanuel Amunike, Stars have scored 3 goals while conceding 4 goals in their four outings. On the other hand, Lesotho are at the bottom of the table with 2 points, scoring two goals from their four outings.
They have conceded seven goals in the process while Uganda Cranes are at the summit of the table with ten points, scoring six goals and are the only side in group L yet to concede a goal.
Addressing members of the media yesterday in Dar es Salaam, Mwakyembe said this is the best time for Taifa Stars to qualify and make it to Cameroon after 38 years of absence in the continental biggest football competition.
"As one way to ensure that we get good results in Lesotho, we have agreed to conduct a two-week camp in South Africa because the country has similar climate conditions like Lesotho as such, it would be easy for our players to adapt," Mwakyembe said.
Mwakyembe observed that currently, Lesotho is experiencing winter weather hence very important for Taifa Stars players to get used to that condition before stepping into the country.
Adding, the Minister hailed the timely donation of 50m/- boost from President John Magufuli which he said will be used effectively to prepare Stars for Lesotho mission. He called the finance assistance a 'massive boost' for the country's senior football team.
"The fact that our president (Magufuli) has pumped money to enable Taifa Stars beat Lesotho and qualify to Cameroon, is not something to be taken for granted, we should all stand up together and rally behind the team whose chances of progressing are wide open," Mwakyembe insisted.
He added that his Ministry and the Tanzania Football Federation (TFF) have a big debt to pay to president Magufuli and the entire Tanzanians through ensuring that the national football team wins both of its remaining two AFCON qualifiers fixtures.
Also, Mwakyembe thanked people and companies which contributed money to facilitate Star's trip to Cape Verde including supporters who travelled to back up their beloved team there.
Likewise, the Minister lauded sports men and women who stormed the National Stadium on October 16th describing it as a crucial 'ingredient' that propelled Taifa Stars to win 2-0 over Cape Verde.
However, Mwakyembe has called upon people, companies and sports stakeholders to donate kindly with whatever they have to facilitate the country's senior team to do well its upcoming games bearing in mind that the success of the team is the victory of the entire country.
Meanwhile, Taifa Stars have moved up four positions in the latest FIFA rankings released yesterday by the World football governing body to settle in 136 position.
Taifa Stars, who are currently placed second in group L defeated Cape Verde 2-0 at the National Stadium on October 16, the results might have attributed in improving the team's position in the global rankings.
Stars have had twelve points move having gained 1101 points compared to the 1089 they had in the last rankings released on September