YOUNG Africans technical bench declared that they will go for an ‘all out war’, seeking hefty victory against Zambia’s Zanaco FC in their CAF Champion League first round, first leg encounter at the National Stadium in Dar es Salaam tomorrow.
A comfortable win at home is crucial for Yanga, since it will place them in a good position to land ticket into group stage of the tournament. In run up to the crunch battle, Assistant Coach Juma Mwambusi told journalists at the press conference in Dar es Salaam yesterday that there will be no let up in the clash against the Zambian side.
Mwambusi said the technical bench took time to assess their side’s chances against the Zambian team, saying players are in high spirit ready for the battle. However, he expressed his full respect for Zanaco.
He said it will be a tough game because Zanaco is among the top clubs in Zambia, but said that they are well prepared and targeting for a convincing victory, while also keeping a clean sheet.
“In Saturday (tomorrow)’s match, we will go for as many goals as we can, while also playing cautiously not to concede a goal at home so that the second leg becomes a mere formality,” he said.
Mwambusi’s words were firmly supported by the club’s General Secretary, Charles Boniface Mkwasa, who said the leadership was making sure that everything is provided for the team to be in a better position to win a double header clash against Zanaco.
“The leadership is doing everything within its capacity to see the team is well prepared for the match,” he said, calling for the fans to come to the stadium to cheer their team.
“The lads will be charged up and record good results when they see the fans supporting them in the stadium,” he said. Yanga Head Coach, Zambian George Lwandamina ‘Chicken’ will be pleased to welcome back several key players, who are reportedly to have shaken off injuries and are fully fit ready for the match.
According to Mkwasa, the Jangwani Street team has been boosted by the return of their strikers Donald Ngoma, Amis Tambwe and midfield maestro Haruna Niyonzima, who were nursing injuries.
“We are pleased that some of the players who were in the injury list have passed their medical test and are in line for selection tomorrow,” the former national team, Taifa Stars coach, said.
He added that the only players who are still in the injury list include defender Patcho Ngonyani and goalkeeper, Benno Kakolanya, who have not featured for the team for quite a long time now.
The Zambian flag bearers in the continental top tier club championships jetted in Dar es Salaam yesterday evening in time for the match. To reach this stage, Yanga eliminated Comoro’s Ngaya de Mde with 6-2 aggregate.
They won 5-1 away in Moroni but were surprisingly held to a 1-1 draw at the National Stadium in Dar es Salaam. Zanaco saw off Rwanda’s APR after being held to a goalless draw at home and later won 1-0 away at the Amahoro Stadium in Kigali to set a date with Yanga.
Zanaco, who have made just one group stage appearance in continental competition that came in the 2010 edition of the Confederation Cup, are likely targeting to emulate their Zambian colleagues Zesco’s achievement in the CL last year, by advancing into the group stage in April and onwards to the knockout rounds.
Players in Zanaco squad that arrived in Dar es Salaam comprise: Rachar Kola, Ziyo Tembo, George Chilufya, Lee Ngoma, Richard Kasonde, Mangani Banda, Fashon Junior Sakala, Faith Sakala, Augustin Mulenga, Taonga Bwembya, Attram Kwame, Chongo Chirwa, Keneddy Musonda, Peter Jacob Banda, Andrew Kwiliko, Boyd Siame Musonda, Ernest Mbewe and Toaster Nsabata.