16 January 2019

Tanzania: Top England, Turkey Clubs Eye Samatta

Dar es Salaam — Plans are afoot for English Premier League side Cardiff City to sign KRC Genk's Tanzanian striker Mbwana Samatta, it has been revealed.

The Bluebirds have made a £13 million (Sh34,233,135,300) offer for the hitman, who is the Belgian first division league's top scorer, according to France Football.

Samatta - Tanzania's national soccer team - captain, has also attracted interest from Fenerbahce FC of Turkey.

The gifted striker, who has scored 15 goals in 20 matches so far this campaign, was on Middlesbrough's wish list last summer.

The 26-year-old has also scored 9 goals in 10 Europa League matches this season - in unbelievable form.

Samatta, who has scored 57 goals in 142 games for the Belgian club across four seasons, was to join FC Schalke 04 of Germany but the deal is on hold after Cardiff proposed the £13m offer.

The hitman moved to Genk from DR Congo's TP Mazembe in 2016, having started his career with Tanzanian giants Simba.

He has scored 17 times in 45 appearances for Taifa Stars, having made his international debut aged 18.

In 2016, Samatta became the first player from East Africa to be crowned the Caf African Player of the Year based on the continent.

The forward, then plying his trade with TP Mazembe, garnered a total of 127 points, ahead of his teammate and DR Congo goalkeeper Robert Muteba Kidiaba, who amassed 88 points.

Algerian Baghdad Bounedjah trailed in third place with 63 points.

Samatta was a key figure as TP Mazembe won the Caf Champions League crown, scoring seven goals in the process and finished as the competition's top scorer.

He scored in the semi-finals return match against Sudan's El Merrick as well in both legs in the final.

Cardiff manager Neil Warnock has been desperate to add to his striking options this month, with a lack of penetration in front of goal proving to be the Bluebirds' Achilles heel so far this season.

"There's a number of players we want to rope in," he added.

. But nothing concrete at all."

Argentinean Sala had initially expressed doubts about a move to Cardiff, but the fact he is travelling to Wales suggests he has had a change of heart. French reports state that he still needs convincing, however.

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