The national soccer team, Taifa Stars, will lock horns with Malawi (The Flames) in an international strength testing match today at the National Stadium in Dar es Salaam.
The match is of great importance to the national teams as it will be their last preparations match before they face Ivory Coast and Kenya respectively in the first leg of World Cup qualifiers.
The game is also the first assignment for Kim Poulsen as Tanzanian national team coach after replacing his compatriot Jan Poulsen.
Speaking at the Tanzania Football Federation (TFF) headquarters in Dar es Salaam yesterday, Malawi coach Kinnah Phiri and his counterpart said the game is very important to them as it will give them the opportunity to assess their players before the next week crucial encounters.
Poulsen said the friendly match will be his best opportunity to assess his team which has been undergoing intensive training for ten days.
He also said the game will give him enough chance to make final touches before facing Ivory Coast away on June 2.
“My players have been performing well in training for the past ten days and it’s my hope that tomorrow’s (today) meeting against Malawi will be useful to our side as they are above us in the FIFA rankings,” said the coach.
The coach also disclosed that Nurdin Bakari and Thomas Ulimwengu will not play today as they are nursing injuries picked during training.
On his remarks Phiri, who is also a former Malawi national team player, said he chose Tanzania over his early preference Egypt because the country’s national team has improved tremendously and he believes that Taifa Stars will give his side a tough time before his side face Kenya away in Nairobi on 2 June
The Malawi coach, who is being assisted by another Malawian legendary Young Chimodzi, also disclosed that he has come with 20 players with half of them playing professional football in South Africa, one in Mozambique and one in Spain.
“I have come with 20 players. Half of them play professional football in South Africa, one from Mozambique and another one plays for Spanish giants Atletico Madrid. We are well prepared for this game as it will be used to prepare our team against Kenya next weekend and also Nigeria on June 9,” he said.
Meanwhile, TFF has disclosed the entry fees for the match as 20,000/- for VIP A, 15,000/- for VIP B and C, 5,000/- for orange stands and 3,000/- for green stands.