Will Pluijm-Mwambusi chemistry

Will Pluijm-Mwambusi chemistry

AZAM FC, who, have qualified to play in this year’s CECAFA Kagame Cup final are seeking to retain the title by beating Simba today. Azam seemed to have benefited much with the arrival of a Dutch tactician, Hans Van der Pluijm as he and his assistant, Juma Mwambusi played a key role in bringing the team to the final stage.

With the partnership, Azam managed to beat East African football giants such as Gor Mahia, Rayon Sport and APR on their way to the final. Pundits have described the coming in of Juma Mwambusi as assistant head coach to Pluijm at Azam FC as ‘the engine’ which will make the club active Mainland Premier League contenders next season.

The two decorated coaches who are respected in the country, having worked successfully together at Young Africans before going separate ways, have been viewed as the right chemistry which was lacking at Azam’s technical area.

Mwambusi rose to fame during his era as head coach at Mbeya City where he promoted the club into the top flight league before he crossed the line to join Yanga where he replaced Boniface Mkwasa as the club’s assistant coach.

In 2013/2014 season, Mwambusi guided Mbeya City to finish on third place of the country’s elite football league posing major threat to giants such as Simba, Yanga and Azam. In that season, Mbeya City accumulated 49 points from 26 matches, 11 points ahead of Simba who finished their campaign on fourth slot with 38 points from the same number of matches.

Azam were crowned 2013/2014 champions of the Mainland Premier League after maximizing 62 points as they winded up the season undefeated from 26 games, winning 18 encounters and drawing eight matches in the process.

However, Mwambusi was out of football circles for almost one year and sports fans are eager to see how his return will add momentum in the league. His last assignment at the Jangwani street based club was during the last year’s SportPesa Super Cup where he lost in the semifinals.

“I believe that Azam will now reap the fruits they have been looking for because football philosophy of Hans Van Pluijm and Mwambusi is almost the same hence the club is on its way to prosperity,” said Kassim Liogope, a sports analyst and one of the football coaches at JMK Youth Park in Dar es Salaam.

He added that the two coaches will respect each other in terms of decision making a move Kassim described as essential as far as success in football is concerned. The duo’s major test at the helm of Azam will be today when they defend the Kagame Cup against Simba.

Azam, who were pooled in group A alongside Uganda’s Vipers SC, JKU of Zanzibar and South Sudan’s Kator FC, beat all their opponents, except Vipers who forced a draw with the team in their second group match.

On Wednesday, Azam under the tutelage of the “Two Magicians” repeated the 2015 final by beating again Gor Mania 2-0 at the national stadium. Still even they lose to Simba, the partnership has proven vital for the club as football analysts wait to see if signing the Zimbabwean ‘hit-man’, Donald Ngoma could prove worthy as it was to Young Africans.


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