The new Mainland Premier League season has finally begun which means that the title race has started in earnest.
Considering the fact that Yanga got the better of their bitter rivals Simba last season, it is expected that the Msimbazi street side will fight tooth and nail to return to the summit of local football.
Simba’s determination is likely to be all the more steely considering that Yanga shoveled salt into their raw wounds by robbing them of Kagame Cup glory recently.
However, in recent seasons, we have witnessed an unprecedented development in local football, with the emergence of Azam challenging the dominance of Yanga and Simba, arguably for the very first time.
Featuring a star-studded side, the ‘ice-cream’ makers finished third last season and will surely have lofty ambitions of winning the whole shebang this time around.
As for Yanga themselves, the reigning champions must be feeling pretty confident at the moment but they should remember that pride comes before a fall.
Let us now look at another aspect of the premier league, which in recent seasons has only grown more prominent.
Indeed, the presence of foreign stars in our league is something that developed over the past decade and has arguably made for fiercer competition.
With the likes of top marksmen such as Hamis Kiiza and Kipre Tchetche set to feature in the league this season for Yanga and Azam respectively, the stage is set for a do-or-die battle for the coveted league crown.
In the run-up to the league kick-off yesterday though, the local sporting headlines have been full of one transfer controversy after another.
While the finger-pointing and harsh words can get depressing at times, we should remember that it would not be Tanzanian football if there were no controversies.
Thankfully, the real action out on the pitch began yesterday and hopefully we are in for a captivating season.
Lloyd Elipokea is a sports