THE Red’s fans screamed, “YOU WILL NEVER WALK ALONE.” It was their day and a memorable night. Indeed that is exactly what they demonstrated to the world on Wednesday this week. They strolled at Allianz Arena as underdogs but to the dismay of many they humbled Bayern Munich 3-1 in a thriller that made the world ‘stand’ for 90 minutes. The game was both breathtaking and screen captivating!
Astonishingly, the Germans started fiercely but it was the visitors who stared the score line with a fabulous goal from Sadio Mane who was the man of the match! He brilliantly ran into Bayern Munich’s danger zone, out powered the defender before skipping the goalkeeper and chipped the ball into the net. It was an amazing goal by all standards. Jorgen Klopp, the head coach said you can watch the goal 500 times and still enjoy the way it was slotted in.
The Reds played with discipline, determination and resilience throughout the game to sweep into the UEFA quarter-finals. At the end of 90 minutes, their head coach Jorgen Klopp was not short of words. “The size we have, the power we have, and we are a massive threat” he swanked.
I am sure Simba players, their technical bench as well as management team watched the game as it unfolded. As we all witnessed Bayern Munich were a threat throughout with a ball possession of 62 percent to 38 percent but they lost. What does this mean in the world of football? Possessing the ball is one thing and scoring goals is quite another. It’s like winking a girl in the dark!
The Gunners (Arsenal), are good at ball possession by all measure but it hasn’t earn them a trophy for a decade now. Possession always goes hand in hand with attacking and scoring skills. A winning team always signs big players who poses a threat to their opponent. The likes of CR7, Lionel Messi, Harry Kane, Sadio Mane, Mo Salah, Killian Mbape and others always sends chilling waves to their opponents.
A team wins as a result of employing a superb coach and his technical team who then train players to work as a team, nurture individual unique skills, discern talents and groom them. In the end players learn to possess the ball and score goals. Once strikers are close to 18 yards of the goal of the opponent, they usually sprint and attack like hungry lions in front of prey which fights for his life. It’s like a plane which is in the last lane of taking off, if you like!
Today Simba knows it’s a do or die. They are playing a team which humiliated them in the first round. The humiliation and the wound is still fresh in their memories but they need to let go of that and lay their focus and concentration on this crucial game. They need to get into the pitch like hungry Lions who know the power and strength of their prey.
Undoubtedly, if they play with pride, determination and resilience, they will be able to overcome all the odds and outplay their opponents AS Vital. With all the fans at the national stadium and the support from TFF as well as government, they have all the reason to win this game. All they need is self-composure and an insatiable appetite to win the game.
Discipline will be profound in this game as their opponents will try to use every dirty tricks to get them out of the game. Once they ran into their trap it would be easier for players who lacks emotional intelligence to commit fouls that will in the end cost the team. I am sure the technical bench have worked on this aspect and that players will focus on winning the game and make their fans proud.
‘We must win this game spirit’ must be drilled into players’ brain and the head coach must remind players of that all the time. Game plan and tactics must be flexible enough to allow players change sides to match with the tempo of the game. The coach also needs to make quick decisions that will help the team win the game than waiting until the last minutes when things have gone astray.
The mood at Allianz Arena was superb during the tie between Bayern Munich and Liverpool. Fans were chanting and cheering their players throughout the game. They did not fight or insult each other neither did they throw bottles to the match officials or players. With a magnificent stadium and a brass band playing quietly at the background, and the UEFA’s wonderful catch phrase “The Champion” made the atmosphere at Allianz Arena extremely impressive.
This is what we expect at the National Stadium today. Wekundu wa Msimbazi fans singing and applauding their players throughout the game. We don’t expect to see any ugly scene as we ‘flood’ the stadium to support Tanzania’s flag bearers at CAF Club Champion Competition. I believe The Reds of Msimbazi will do The Reds way! Wishing Simba and fans all the best.
Have a great Sato comrades!