ZANZIBAR: THE scramble for semi-final slots in the underway 2024 Mapinduzi Cup continues with two exciting games at New Amaan Sports Complex in Zanzibar, today.
The delayed fixture will see four-time winners of the tournament Simba hosting Jamhuri in a game scheduled to kick off at 8:15 pm.
In an early encounter, record winners Azam face off Singida Fountain Gate in an all-mainland premier league clash as the former search for an opportunity to clinch the silverware for the sixth time.
At a pre-match briefing on Sunday, Simba Assistant Coach Selemani Matola said they are focused on doing well and getting a chance to reach the semi-finals.
“We have seen how they (Jamhuri) play and they are a good team with competitive players capable of making the game difficult but we are ready for that challenge,” he said.
He added that based on the drills they had before the match, he is confident to maximise convincing results from the match while insisting that their top priority is to lift the cup.
Asked if their newly signed player Babacar Sarr would be part of the match, Matola replied that he would not be in the match as he is yet to understand his teammates well.
On his part, Jamhuri coach Mohamed Juma admitted that facing Simba is always a tough match but they have made a good plan that will help them to shine.
“We are playing against a big club in Tanzania with many experienced players who can change the game any moment…we have taken into consideration that and we are ready for the battle,” he said.
In another pre-match meeting, Azam Coach Bruno Ferry said they have had good preparations to downsize their mainland colleagues Singida Fountain Gate.
“It is a difficult match because we know each other well, our target is none other than to stamp success and be able to make it into the semi-finals of the competition.
Similarly, Singida Fountain Gate Assistant Coach Nazir Khalfan nodded that it has never been an easy game when the duo meets as such, people should expect a thrilling match.
“We will not afford to lose the game, we know Azam has a concrete defence but we have sharp strikers who are curious to make a breakthrough at any time,” he said.