Dar es Salaam — The national football team Taifa Stars' captain Mbwana Samatta and Simon Msuva are missing from the team's training camp which has started in the city.
Taifa Stars is preparing for an international friendly match against Malawi to be held at the Benjamin Mkapa Stadium on June 13. Samatta plays for the Turkey side Fenerbahce, while Msuva plays for Morocco's Waydad Casablanca.
Speaking yesterday, Tanzania Football Federation's Clifford Ndimbo said the players have unavoidable reasons for not attending the training - and will give details thereof later. However, he wa not in a position to categrically say that the players would miss the match.
"Other players continue training at the Uhuru and Benjamin Mkapa Stadia in the city," he said, noting that on the list of missing players is Novatus Dismas who plays for the Maccabi Tel Aviv. "We will also give details on Dismas who is in Israel," he said.
According to Ndimbo, 24 other players have started preparations ahead of the international friendly match.
The players who are training under head coach Kim Poulsen are Aishi Manula, Metacha Mnata and Juma Kaseja - all goalkeepers. Defenders are Shomari Kapombe, Israel Mwenda and Mohammed Hussein. The list also includes Edward Manyama, Erasto Nyoni, Bakari Mwamnyeto, Kenned Juma and Dickson Job (Yanga) and Nickson Kibabage who play for Youssoufia FC of Morocco.
Midfielders are Mzamiru Yassin (Simba), Feisal Salum (Yanga), Salum Abubakari ((Azam), Braison Nkulula (Azam), Yusuf Mhilu (Kagera Sugar), and Ayoub Lyanga of Azam Football Club.
Others who have been selected as midfielders are Abdulhamis Suleiman (Coastal Union) and Idd Nado who is playing for Azam FC. Strikers are John Bocco (Simba), Meshack Abraham (Gwambina), and Mbeya City's Kibu Dennis.
In another development, Malawi have received a major boost with the arrival of their foreign-based players as they prepare to face Tanzania in a friendly on June 13. The Malawi national team 'Flames' is expected to arrive in Tanzania one day before the encounter.
The Flames will make the trip to Dar es Salaam to face Taifa Stars at the Benjamin Mkapa Stadium - and, on Thursday, most of their foreign-based players, led by Moldova-based duo Peter Banda and Charles Petro - arrived in Lilongwe to start preparations for the match.
However, the Flames suffered a blow in their build-up to the game after Nyasa Big Bullets defender Precious Sambani and Georgia-based midfielder Francisco Madinga were ruled out of the match.