Whiff of fourth ASFC Derby imminent

The possibility of witnessing a fourth successive Azam Sports Federation Cup (ASFC) traditional derby match between Simba and Young Africans is knocking as both have stepped into the last 16 of the contest.

Interestingly, both of them have made it through after recording hefty 8-0 victories in their round of 32 encounters staged at Benjamin Mkapa Stadium in Dar es Salaam over the weekend.

Simba were the first to penetrate after knocking out Eagle FC 8-0 before the defending champions produced the similar victory margin against Kurugenzi with both games unfolding at the 60,000 capacity venue.

Records have it that in 2020, they met in the semifinals of which Simba emerged 4-1 victors to book a finale slot against Namungo and in 2021, they interfaced in the finals at Lake Tanganyika Stadium in Kigoma where the Msimbazi Street Reds cherished a 1-0 win to claim the silverware.

Again, in May this year, they faced-off in the last four category at CCM Kirumba Stadium in Mwanza and here, Yanga registered a 1-0 success to jump into the finals hence, this season, they may as well go head to head somewhere en-route to the finishing line.

However, speaking after sealing a quadruple against Kurugenzi, Yanga’s striker Clement Mzize said scoring four goals has given him enough confidence and that he will continue to work hard in order to get more playing time.

“I am grateful to God for this wonderful performance. I also appreciate our technical panel for giving me an opportunity to start the match and this shows that they have much trust in me,” he said.

On his part, Yanga Assistant Coach Cedric Kaze appreciated efforts shown by his players saying they put it all on the pitch to source the convincing win and are now looking forward to the next chapter.

“It is a great win but I think our performance could have been much better than that. The good thing is to qualify for the next stage and we are now going back to prepare for our next opponent,” he said.

He also gave credit to Mzize for his overall work-rate on the day saying he is slowly maturing but there is no need to give him much pressure as he is yet to reach his peak.

In his reaction, Kurugenzi Assistant Coach Bernard Magogo reiterated that his charges gave Yanga much respect thereby leading to the big upset while insisting that they have learnt a lot from the defending champions.

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