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Simba’s double-title bid faces Azam test

SIMBA SC have another opportunity to end the season with two titles as they face Azam FC in the quarterfinals of the Azam Sports Federation Cup (ASFC) at the National Stadium in Dar es Salaam today.

As Simba battle it up with Azam for the last four slot of the the country’s second biggest club level tournament, Mkwakwani Stadium in Tanga will be brightly coloured by Sahare All Stars who entertain Ndanda FC in another quarter final match.

Sahare All Stars, who are the only First Division League (FDL) side to reach this far, booted out Panama FC 5-2 in the last 16 match of the competition.

From a distant, it seems to be a match between the teams of the same level even though Ndanda trade in the top flight league, but their performance on the pitch is almost the same.

However, the Mainland Premier League champions are still in celebration mood after successfully defending the title for the third time in a row and have since vowed to clinch it back to back for the next seven years.

The Msimbazi Street side were declared new champions on Sunday despite being held to a goalless draw by Tanzania Prisons at Sokoine Stadium in Mbeya with six more games to play.

At this stage, no team between the two sides (Simba and Azam) can be underrated when it comes to such knock out games especially with the fact that the champions get the keys to play in CAF Confederation Cup.

But, speaking in the city ahead of the game, Simba Head Coach Sven Vandenbroeck reiterated that they also want to succeed in ASFC.

"After winning the league title, our focus now is on the ASFC of which I know that it will be a tough duel against a good team (Azam), but we will try to do our best," Vandenbroeck said.

He added that all players in his squad are fit and remain focused to excel and make it into the last four of the competition.

On his part, Azam FC Assistant Coach Bahati Vivier said he believes that the preparations his players have had prior to the game will help them a lot to emerge winners.

"As you know, this is a knock out game such that a loss means you are out of the contest as such, we have to play lungs out to ensure that we come out clean," he said.

He continued that the two away league results they stamped against Kagera Sugar 1-0 loss and a 1-1 draw with Biashara United should not discourage their fans from coming in big numbers to rally behind the team.

IT is going to be a busy weekend ...

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Author: BENJAMIN BEN

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