Kariakoo derby fever grips Dar as Yanga, Simba get set for battle

What you need to know:

  • The match will be a decider for the two teams vying for the mainland title.

Dar es Salaam. Excitement is building among Young Africans (Yanga) and Simba fans ahead of the Mainland Tanzania Premier League encounter as the two sides prepare for what is expected to be a clash of titans at the Benjamin Mkapa Stadium in Dar es Salaam on Saturday.

The match will be a decider for the two teams vying for the mainland title.

Yanga currently sit at the top with 55 points from 21 matches, while Simba are in third place with 46 points from 20 matches.

Azam FC are second with 50 points from 22 matches. Should Yanga win the encounter, it will give them an 85 percent chance to win the title for the third time in a row.

Simba, who are nine points behind Yanga, need a victory to close the point gap and revive their hopes of winning the title this season.

If the Msimbazi Street giants lose the encounter, it will leave them uncertain about winning the title or finishing in second place this season.

Simba’s assistant coach, Seleman Matola, said it was a must-win encounter for his side due to disappointing recent results.

Since their elimination in the CAF Champions League quarterfinals, the Msimbazi Street side has yet to record a win in Mainland Tanzanian competitions.

Simba suffered a blow after being eliminated from the CRDB Federation Cup. The team lost on 6–5 penalties by Mashujaa.

The results were a significant setback for Simba members and fans, who were hoping for better outcomes after the CAF Champions League setback.

After that, Simba recorded a 1-1 draw against Ihefu FC at the Liti Stadium in the Singida region, a result that disappointed even the team’s head coach, Abdelhak Benchikha, who decided to remain at the Liti Stadium bench for a while as other team officials and players were in the changing rooms.

“We are not happy with our current trend at all. The only way to make our fans and members happy is to win against Yanga,” said Matola.

However, Yanga’s assistant captain, Dickson Job, said they are ready to face Simba and maintain their winning streak.

“We are prepared to meet Simba and confident in our ability to achieve the best results. We are champions, and we need to win and maintain our record against Simba,” said Job.