Home ground advantages vital in Simba, USG clash

Home ground advantages vital in Simba, USG clash

TANZANIANS will have their fingers crossed hoping, wishing and praying for the country’s solo envoys in CAF Confederation Cup Simba to win their decisive group D match against US Gendarmerie at Benjamin Mkapa Stadium this Sunday. T

his is a tense moment in football whereby the plight of the nation should be given a priority knowing in advance that if Simba proceed into the last eight stage of the contest, it will be a success to the whole country.

As such, with temperature rising high, the representatives have one target and that is to win the home game as they have been doing in most of their encounters.

That is the only thing that can guarantee them a ticket in the tournament quarters. Coincidentally, in CAF Interclub games, a lot of decisive matches for Simba have been played at the home turf and the Msimbazi Street Reds have been making good use of advantages of a home ground.

There are series of good records stamped by Simba in these clashes and one of them was a 4-1 win over FC Platinum last year which took them into the group stages of the CAF Champions League. Likewise, using the same territory, they excelled to defeat AS Vita 4-1 to squeeze into the quarterfinals of the champions league in a game which was also decisive for them.

As such; when it comes to these matches, the Msimbazi Street Reds usually have a big advantage to sail through and all eyes will be plastered at Benjamin Mkapa venue to see if they will replicate the best performances they had had in their past duels.

With 35,000 fans permitted to witness the encounter, there is no doubt that they will do their part to push the players and make them feel the glimpse of home fans which in a game of football and other sport disciplines play a vital role.

Yes, the allowed number of spectators is considerable, meaning that they will be able to offer the same vibe they did to help Simba qualify in group stage and quarterfinals of the CAF Champions League in the past seasons.

Though the confidence is there for them to do well on Sunday, they should not underestimate USGN because this is when you should respect your opponent.

In this group D, all four teams have an opportunity to make it into the last eight that’s why the last fixtures are very important to each of them and it will depend on other results to be generated elsewhere.

For instance, USGN who are bottom- placed with 5 points from five games equivalent to one point from every match can too advance further if they upset Simba on Sunday while hoping ASEC Mimosas to defeat RS Berkane.

It is all about calculations and for Simba, they just need two results either a win or draw and if they stamp a stalemate, then they should hope that RS Berkane lose to ASEC Mimosas for them to progress.

However, pundits have strong belief that Simba are going to jump into the next phase of the contest basing on a good home record they have in international clashes especially in the confederation cup where they are yet to suffer a setback from the home soil.

According to this year’s statistics in the unfolding confederation cup, Simba have won two encounters and both of them at Benjamin Mkapa venue hence they will be searching to maintain their perfect run.

After defeating ASEC Mimosas 3-1, they went on to outclass RS Berkane 1-0 to grab six essential points before stamping an away draw and two defeats.

However, in his words recently, the club’s Media and Communications Manager Ahmed Ally said that if they do not make it into the last eight, the management will assess Head Coach Franco Pablo’s future.

“As a club, we set up our targets with the coach of reaching into the semifinals of the confederation cup hence if we fail to step into the quarters, he will be tasked to explain why the team did not make it.

“Afterwards, the management will make its decision but in accordance with the level of performance the team is displaying under Pablo’s tutelage, the club has much trust in him such that he can fail to achieve the intended goals and yet continue to be at the helm of the team,” Ally said. He continued: “If you look at the way Simba is playing, you can easily forecast about a bright future for the club as such we have no doubt with him but the targets we put forward is to slide into the confederation cup semis.” Elaborating about Sunday’s important match, Ally said they are aware that a win over USGN will be a deserved gift to all Tanzanians as such; players are ready to fight.

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