Dar es Salaam — Tanzania’s envoys in the African Champions League, Simba today face AS Vita Club of DR Congo in the crucial match at the Benjamin Mkapa Stadium.
The encounter has been scheduled to kick-off at 4pm as Simba need only one point to qualify for the quarterfinal stage of the competition, which will feature eight teams.
As the Msimbazi Street giants need just a draw, AS Vita Club target victory in order to revive their hopes of qualifying for the same stage of the tournament.
Simba are at the top of group A with 10 points after winning three matches and drawing once while AS Vita are placed third with four points. The group log shows that Al Ahly are placed second with seven points while the Sudanese Al Merrikh are at the bottom with one point. The Simba-AS Vita tie is expected to be tough due to the fact that the Congolese side target to take revenge on Simba after conceding a 1-0 defeat in Kinshasa during their opening match. Also, the two teams’ statuses in the league standings make today’s encounter be tough. Simba will wind up against Al Ahly in Cairo, Egypt, while the Congolese will host Al Merrikh, who are already out of the qualification race.
Simba head coach Didier Gomes said all of his players are in top shape and promised not to let down football fans in the encounter. Gomes said they are taking the game seriously and that their target is to maintain their unbeaten run in group A.
“All my players have been trained well ahead of the match and we do not underestimate our opponents. It is a decisive encounter in which we have to be very keen all the time,” said Gomes. AS Vita assistant coach Raoul Shungu said they target to take revenge on and win over Simba as a draw will mean they are out of the race. “We know how difficult the situation we are going to face, but we target victory in order to revive our hopes,” said Shungu.