Nabi: It’s difficult but possible

YOUNG Africans coach Nasreddine Nabi believes his side can still win the CAF Confederation Cup title despite a 2-1 home loss to USM Alger at Benjamin Mkapa Stadium in Dar es Salaam on Sunday.

Nabbi said they still have 90 more minutes to fight and will give it all for next weekend’s return leg in Algiers.

“There are 90 minutes left, and as long as we still have this chance, there is an opportunity. It is difficult but not impossible.

“I can’t promise the supporters I will return with the Cup. But I say, we will fight to turn the tide. We have the means to do this because we have already proven it,” Nabi said.

Nabi made these remarks during the post-conference, where he also insisted his squad’s belief is intact despite their first loss at home. He believes his side can win in Algiers as long as their opponents won away.

“If they have managed to win here, we can also win at their backyard; hence the most important thing is to keep our heads up and concentrate fully on the upcoming second leg encounter, which will also be a tense duel,” stated Nabi.

Yanga will need a win of two or more goals to seal the silverware, while a 2-1 victory will push to extra time and penalties.

USM Alger Head Coach Abdelhak Benchikha noted the job still needs to be done and therefore demanded focus from his players with less consideration on the result from the first leg.

“Nothing is done yet. The game remains 50-50. I have experience with these kinds of matches as a coach.

“Yanga will come to Algeria with nothing to lose, and we must remain focused. Yes, we have a small step from the first leg, but I know how things can change, and we should not lose focus. We will keep working,” remarked Benchikha.

Benchikha also applauded his side for positive results, insisting they implemented their strategy well.

“I am happy with this positive result. We played a very heroic match, and we implemented our strategy well. It was tough playing under the rainy conditions, but our players showed a superb game, and possibly we should have scored more,” noted the coach.

He added, “We had an outstanding balance in defending and attacking, and our tactical approach was perfect. We did not leave spaces for Yanga to exploit because they have dangerous players who can punish you.”

In a related development, Minister for Culture, Arts and Sports Pindi Chana encouraged Yanga players to maintain focus as they still have a big chance to embrace the CAF title.

Speaking while handing over the team a 20m/- package from President Samia Suluhu Hassan’s goal bonus, the Minister reiterated that they should not be troubled by the defeat and instead aim high through having good drills to shine in Algeria.

“All is not lost; we have another big chance to win in Algeria, you played very well today (Sunday), and without doubt, Inshallah, you will win during the second leg match,” she said.

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