NATIONAL team, Taifa Stars’ Head Coach Etienne Ndayiragije has been impressed with the performance displayed by the Under-16 youth team at the ongoing Mercedes Benz Aegean Cup in Turkey.
The national Under-16 side secured its first victory against Kosovo by 4-2 and Ndayiragije, who is with the team in Turkey, has taken some positives from the tournament.
A goal from Ladak Juma in the 13th minute, Kassim Ibrahim’s second goal three minutes later and two goals from Omar Abbas in the 36th and 67th minute were enough for Tanzania to win maximum points.
It was the second match for the Tanzanian boys, who lost 1-0 to Ireland in their opening game of the tournament that kicked off on Wednesday and set to climax on Tuesday.
“It has been a good experience for the boys so far. They demonstrated great maturity and talent… they have been playing really well in the competition. These talents must be developed to effectively step into the senior squad within the near future,” said Ndayiragije.
Commenting on the game, the U-16 coach Maalim Salehe lauded his players for keeping concentration and focus throughout the game that enabled them to win.
“We played well and won against Kosovo. My players had good concentration, coordination and avoided mistakes that had cost us in the first game,” he said.
Turkey is on top of Group A standings with six points followed by Ireland which has three points tied with Tanzania but are separated on superior goal difference, while Kosovo remains at the bottom.
Host Turkey has won two consecutive games. They edged Kosovo 1-0 and registered the same margin against Ireland. Tanzania was due to face Turkey late yesterday.
In Group B, the Republic of Korea is on top of the standings with six points. They beat Ukraine in the first game by 3-0 and defeated Macedonia by 3-1.
Albania are second placed tied on six points with leaders but are inferior on goal difference. They won 1-0 won against Macedonia and Ukraine respectively.
The Republic of Korea and Albania have already qualified to the semi-final while in Group A the last group matches will determine who will be through to the semi-final as still all teams have an equal chance to be through though Turkey has more high chances.
Tanzania lineup included; Miraji Rashid, Thabit Tirshan, Daniel Ndalo, Anyimike Shauri, Ladak Juma, Abdulrazaq Salum, Omar Abbas, Enzo Genilson, Abubakar Abudallah, Hamis Mohamed and Kassim Ibrahim