Tanzania: Simba's Double-Title Bid, Can Be Fortune to Minnows

SIMBA'S zeal to claim both the Premier League and the Azam Sports Federation Cup titles this season seems to head for the success as evidenced through the team's 2-0 win over giants Azam.

Simba, who look well equipped to accomplish their mission, are heading for another derby with their traditional rivals, Young Africans on July 12, this year, with the match tipped to decide the country's representatives in the CAF Confederation Cup next season.

Simba's coach Sven Vanderbroeck said loudly that they target to win both titles; Hence they are taking every ASFC match seriously. That has been a very professional campaign for Simba, who have been mercilessly crushing any team that comes on their way.

The 2019/20 season has been a decent campaign for Msimbazi Street side, but the club wants to reap more than it has so far reaped. Coach Vanderbroeck has managed to drill Simba to value every game as a Cup final.

Despite having John Bocco and Meddie Kagere as key goal scorers, Simba have been very outstanding at the back line by having defenders who occasionally turn into goalcreating midfielders.

Central to this have been Pascal Wawa, Shomari Kapombe, Jonas Mkude and Erasto Nyoni and Mohamed Hussein while Clatous Chama and Francis Kahata have been perfect links in most moves that created vital goals. The likes of Miraji Athumani and Hassan Dilunga, who were quite flaky in the past, have come in at points this season and have looked highly competent at their jobs.

As for the front trio of Bocco, Kagere and Luis Miquissone, there's no need to explain just how good they are. Yanga, who now face a sterner test against their traditional foes, said previously that they would like to face Azam instead of Simba, but after seeing off Kagera Sugar, Yanga's coach Luc Eymael changed his mind saying he would like his side to face Simba.

No excuse here, Yanga have to face Simba and see if they are what they are. To Sahare All Stars and Namungo FC, who will meet in the second semifinal, they would prefer Simba to eliminate Yanga and date them at the final owing to the fact that Simba won't leave their CAF Championship League ticket and opt to play in the CAF Confederation Cup.

The tournament's wildcats, Sahare All Stars qualified for the ASFC semis after eliminating Ndanda 4-3 on spot-kicks after a 1-1 draw at Mkwakwani Stadium in Tanga on Wednesday. While at the same day in Dar es Salaam, heavily armed Simba were ferocious in their quarter-final tie against Azam with intent to win from the onset.

They netted the opener in the first half through Bocco who was spiced up by Chama's strike in the second half to seal the precious victory for the Reds. That was the fifth victory for Simba out of five matches against Azam in all competitions this season.

Bocco put Simba ahead with a towering header, sneaking in between goalkeeper Benedict Haule and Never Tigere to power home a well dropped in cross from Francis Kahata in the 39th minute. It was 2-0 in the 56th minute, when Chama netted a stunning goal after latching onto Shomary Kapombe blistering cross.

Still haunted by 1-0 loss to their traditional rivals Yanga in their second Premier League match, Simba would be like a 'wounded bull' when they meet their rivals again this time and football analysts anticipate fierce war at the venue.

While revenge and pride restoration sum Simba coach's endeavour, to Sahare All Stars or Namungo, will pray that target to succeed since it will offer one of them a clean ticket to play in CAF Confederation Cup.

Let's hope for the best from the July 12 clash; It will depict a glimpse of the Tanzanian envoy in CAF Confederation Cup. It is up for grabs by one of the three; Yanga, Namungo and Sahare All Stars.

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