THE pep talk is over in Kigoma as Simba meet their traditional rivals Young Africans in the Azam Sports Federation Cup (ASFC) final at Lake Tanganyika Stadium today.
Simba who lost 1-0 to their traditional rivals in their last Premier League derby at Benjamin Mkapa stadium on July 3rd this year, are keen to stamp a sweet revenge against Yanga who are seeking to settle scores with Simba for 4-1 loss they suffered last year during the Federation Cup semis.
Here in Kigoma, everything is in place and the presence of the big match has made Kigoma and its outskirts in festive mood.
Speaking ahead of the today’s encounter, Simba SC Head Coach Didier Gomes said they target to end the season with two major thrones.
He said they have already grabbed the Premier League trophy and now they are keen to clinch the federation cup as well.
“We will have a unique game and I strongly believe in my players that we will achieve tomorrow (today),” said the French tactician.
Joining him was Simba skipper Mohamed Hussein who said they are well drilled for the encounter and they will fight tooth and nail to ensure they win it at the end,” he said.
The Federation Cup’s director from Tanzania Football Federation, Salum Madadi said he hoped the final will be classic and thanked all those who contributed to the success, most notably the government in Kigoma and the media.
According to Madadi the stadium’s gates will be open from 8:00 in the morning to enable early entrance.
The authorities in Kigoma further said the organisers have directed fans and supporters to strictly observe preventiuve measures against Covid-19 spread.
Kigoma Regional Commissioner Tobias Andengenye said the region’s Security Committee will supervise the process to make people and their properties are safe while also observing preventive measures against Covid-19.
Until yesterday morning over 12,000 tickets were sold here for the match to be staged at 17,000-capacity venue.
It will be the first Dar es Salaam derby to be played in Kigoma. Its presence there has even attracted spectators from outside Tanzania.
On the match’s officials, the Football Referees Association of Tanzania (FRAT) said the referees to officiate the encounter are reliable as they are picked after a thorough pre-assessment.
This was narrated yesterday by FRAT chairman Soud Abdi as his reaction to the official statement from Young Africans which said they were surprised with the decision to let referee Ahmed Arajiga be in charge of Azam Sports Federation Cup (ASFC) finals between Simba and Yanga today.
The statement said Arajiga was picked to officiate two back to back ASFC games for Simba which are the quarterfinals and semifinals and now, he is selected to take care of the finals.