‘Benchikha to change Simba’

DAR ES SALAAM: SIMBA Interim coach Daniel Cadena has lauded the appointment of Abdelhak Benchikha as the team’s new Head Coach and believes the Algeria tactician with his skills will turn things around at the club.

He made the remarks after guiding Simba to a 1-1 home draw by ASEC Mimosas in their CAF Champions League (CAF CL) group B encounter match at Benjamin Mkapa Stadium in Dar es Salaam over the weekend.

“He (Benchikha) is a professional and among the best coaches…I think he will give us all we need and I am here to support and work with him and help him to achieve the club’s goal as what we want is success.

“Winning is the mentality of Simba and all those who work at the club…I think with the new coach, things will positively change in the team,” Cadena said.

Benchikha who boasts of over two decades of experience managing prominent African clubs like Club Africain, Raja Casablanca, CS Belouizdad, and Berkane is expected to be in full charge of Simba in their away game versus Botswana.

Up next, the Reds will travel to play Jwaneng Galaxy in Botswana on Saturday for their second group B assignment of the competition, where positive results will see them bag four points in two games.

Galaxy over the weekend sent shockwaves across the continent after defeating Moroccan giants, Wydad AC with a historic 1-0 away win in Casablanca that saw them at the top of the group.

Commenting on their game against ASEC Mimosas, Cadena pointed out that they had a good first half but in the second half, things went wrong, and their opponents utilized a defence error to get an equalizing goal which was not what they anticipated.

“Our game plan was to win the game and grab maximum points but in football, anything can happen…I was very angry when we conceded the goal,” he disclosed.

However, he said all is not lost as they have five matches to play meaning that they are still better placed to achieve their target of making it to the season’s semi-finals of the Champions League.

On his part, ASEC Mimosas coach Julien Chevalier admitted that in the first half, they had a tough game and things were worse after conceding the penalty.

“We ended the first half poorly but we reacted well in the second half and I believe that we could have won the game if we were sharp enough on the target,” Chevalier said as he insisted that the away one-point is better for them.

In their next CAF CL fixture, they will play against a wounded bull Wydad Casablanca who lost their home match 1-0 to visitors Jwaneng Galaxy.

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