SIMBA SC seek to widen the one-point point gap when they face Azam F C today at Uhuru Stadium in Dar es Salaam.
The win today is vital since it will cleanly decide if they once again deserve the Mainland Premier League after a hiccup in their last game against Kagera Sugar.
The defending champions were denied a chance to snatch 84 points when Kagera Sugar beat them 1-0 on Friday at the same venue.
An own goal by defender Mohamed Hussein in the late stages of the first half was enough to enable the visitors claim vital three points from a seemingly difficult territory to remain 10th on the ladder with 43 poi nts.
It was Simba’s third defeat of the season with Kagera Sugar winning both encounters they played against the leaders who have six more games to play before closing the season.
Simba are clear favourites to reclaim the silverware due to their football superiority. It will be the battle between the first and third slot occupants on the league table with Azam looking to revenge their 3-1 loss they suffered from Simba at the National Stadium in the city during the first round match.
However, the Ice Cream makers who have pocketed 68 points from 35 matches are without a win in their past two matches which saw them drawing 1-1 with Stand United before posting a goalless draw with KMC.
Other matches today will see Tanzania Prisons hosting KMC at Sokoine Stadium in Mbeya while tomorrow; Y oung Africans will take on Ruvu Shooting at Uhuru Stadium.
On the other hand, Simba are the only side in the unfolding league with the best goal difference (GD) as they have conceded only 14 goa ls while having netted 69 goa ls.
Another eye-catching scenario in today’s match will be to see whether the current top goal scorer Meddie Kagere, who has 20 goals to his name will add the tally as the chase for the Golden Boot has become too hot.
His compatriots John Bocco and Emmanuel Okwi each with 14 goals could increase their number only if they manage to score today. Heritier Makambo for Y anga and Salim Aiyee from Mwadui FC, each have scored 16 goals but have a few games to play over their Simba colleagues.
As the league heads to the finishing line with many teams remaining with three matches, the fight for survival next season at the bottom of the table is getting hard game after game.
Four teams which are placed at the danger zone of the elite competition include the 17t h placed Biashara United who have 40 points similar to JKT Tanzania but have a fewer goals to put the latter on 18t h slot.
Sitting on 19t h place are Mwadui who have bagged 37 points after 35 games whereas bottom placed African Lyon have already been confirmed relegation from the next season as they only have 22 points from their 34 e ncounters.
Lyon have lost more games (20) than any other team in the league, drawing 10 and winning four matches.
They have scored 21 goals and conceded 46 in the process meaning that their remaining four fixtures will be played to simply complete their league assignments.