Dar es Salaam. After verbal exchanges by football fans for more than two months, Young Africans SC (‘Yanga’) and Simba SC (‘Simba’) today clash in a Community Shield encounter at the Benjamin Mkapa Stadium in Dar es Salaam, starting at 5pm, according to the Tanzania Football Federation (TFF).
The match will be officiated by referees Ramadhan Kayoko, Frank Komba and Soud Lika. Elly Sasii will be the reserve referee.
The match is expected to be a thrilling one, considering the historic rivalry of the two clubs, which were formed in the mid-1930s.
Simba will be eyeing to stretch their winning tradition, as they seek a 10th victory in the series against their rivals Yanga, who have won only five times against Simba in cup’s history. The records also show that, in the previous six matches, Simba has won four of them.
Simba beat their rivals 4-1 in 2002; 2-0 in 2005.
The Mainland Premier League champions also won 2-0 in 2011, and 5-4 in penalty shoot-outs in 2017.
However, Yanga were the first to record victory against Simba in the competition. The Jangwani Street club won 2-1 in 2001 and 3-1 in 2010 on penalty shoot-outs.
Today, the Tanzanian football giants are also clashing for the third time this year. They faced each other twice in the Mainland Tanzania Premier League, with Yanga winning 1-0 in the second encounter, with Zawadi Mauya scoring the winning goal.
In the first round, the two teams drew 1-1 whereby Yanga’s goal was scored by Michael Sarpong, while Simba equalized through Joash Onyango three minutes before the match ended.
Yanga’s head coach, Nesreddine Nabi, said his players are ready for the encounter, and their target is to win the match.
“We have trained, well and our main goal is to win. It is an open fact that we lost in the African Champions League encounters after making mistakes that we have already rectified, anyway.
“We are in good shape ahead of the match, and we believe that we will get good results. We are taking the encounter seriously, as this is a derby that we are supposed to be very careful about,” said Nabi. He maintained that his players will do their best because they are aware of what their fans expect from them.
Nabi also explained that his players know their commitment ahead of the encounter - and are aware that their fans need nothing short of outright victory from them.
“This is a match that must produce a clear winner. We are not looking for a draw, let alone a defeat,” he stressed.
Simba’s coach Seleman Matola said they expect to shine in the match, so as to continue with their good record. Matola even bragged that he is proud of his squad’s recent results, and believes that they will “continue with the same rhythm.
“We are going to search for victory, and not otherwise. We are aware that Yanga are also a major club. But, that will not stop us from winning the trophy,” he said - stressing that the players’ morale is very high, and they are not ready to disappoint their fans. “We have a very strong squad - not only for the match with Yanga, but also for all the matches in the African Champions League, Azam Federation Cup and he Mainland Premier League. We are ready for the battle,” he insisted.