SOME spectators were on their way out of the Stadium knowing the Simba’s safari in the CAF championship race had come to an end.
The game was heading towards a stoppage time and suddenly Simba banged in a golden goal in the AS Vita net to book a ticket to the quarter finals of the continental level competition.
This was one of the most amazing comebacks by Tanzanian clubs in international competitions.
Frankly speaking many people, including myself, did not expect the Tanzanian club to make it, because they entered the pitch as underdogs following after being beaten 5-0 by the Congolese in their away match last month.
The situation became even more difficult after the Congolese took the lead just few minutes after kick off in their return leg tie in Dar es Salaam last Sunday.
But Simba mounted a comeback just before the half time whistle to level the score and all their efforts for a winner failed to succeed until just a minute before the referee was about to blow his whistle to say it is all over.
Well done Simba, but the victory, apart from being a result worth to be proud of, should be a lesson to the team and other clubs that there is nothing like determination and the ‘never say die’ spirit in sports as it is in life.
This is not the first time for Simba or their traditional rivals Y oung Africans, as well as the national team to do what we saw at the National Stadium last Saturday in the continental competitions.
However, Simba players and officials must do a thorough evaluation of their disappointing and heart breaking performance in most of all their away matches, and ask themselves why?
It looks like Simba players, unlike their predecessors of yester years, are haunted by a hidden fear and lack of confidence when playing away matches. When you compare how they performed at home and away you find there is a big difference.
At home they play as a team, but when they do it in away matches they look like individuals who didn’t know that they have colleagues around to work with so as to win a match.
It is very important to concentrate on the game and not care about the hostility from the terraces. Theses short comings must be thoroughly addressed and look for a solution in their next stage of the continental completion.
They must do all they can to be able to cope with whatever situation that may arise when playing away games, be a bad weather, hostile fans or referee or anything that looks not favourable to them.
There is no alternative except to regard an away match just like any other match and care less about the so called disadvantages they think they have when not playing away from home.
It is worth bearing in mind the famous quotation on playing away matches of the famous Dutch soccer legend, Johan Cruyff (1947- 2016): “Every disadvantage in soccer has its advantage.
If you can’t win an away match, make sure you don’t lose.” I think that should be Simba’s motto in their away matches of the next stage of the continental competition. All the best Simba and good luck.