The 1-0 home defeat to Uganda Cranes does not end Taifa Stars’ hopes to play in the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) finals but rather it should be a wakeup call to prepare well for the last two matches against Niger and Algeria.
Second-placed with four points, Taifa Stars still have a chance to qualify for the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON), but they have to clear Nigerian and Algerian hurdles, which we are convinced it is possible with determination and proper planning.
Though it pained the hearts of all Tanzanians as a win could have placed Taifa Stars at the door of AFCON finals, we are obliged to forget that and plan better for the upcoming matches that now hold our ticket to AFCON finals.
Taifa Stars have more than eight weeks of preparation before hosting Niger at Benjamin Mkapa venue early in June while Uganda will entertain group F leaders Algeria, who have already qualified.
We strongly believe that Taifa Stars still have a good chance to qualify for the AFCON finals as they all arsenal for the job, including the massive support from the government and Tanzanian football lovers.
Nobody should be blamed for the setback because football is a game of mistakes and anybody is bound to make them.
Both players and the technical bench have to intensify preparations and assess our next opponents’ strengths and weaknesses ahead of the June assignments.
Taifa Stars must have enough time to hone players’ skills for the coming matches by playing build-up games to make players fit for the tough challenges.
We would like to caution the technical benches to apply appropriate tactics and strategies to ensure they make good use of both home and away grounds since in the CAF level tournaments most importantly is to make sure you win at home and get with the right discipline in away matches as experience warns us that a single mistake can lead into your punishment.
Taifa Stars have enough quality and experience needed for the AFCON mission and that can be supported by the presence of moral and material support from fans and the government.