History is expected to be made today when city rivals Simba and Yanga meet in a last prestige-laden Mainland Premier League match at the National Stadium in Dar es Salaam.
History is made when the two sides play as those encounters set the rhythm of their rivalry until they next meet, for instance, in any of the more recent regional tournaments.
Nothing is ever ‘friendly’ when the two clubs meet, even as at present when Simba has for all intents and purposes won the championship, but the fighting mood isn’t abated for a second.
Fans of either side take battling their next street rivals as the most important test of whether their team is steely or in tatters.
Today’s game is for all practical intents a formality as far as the league is concerned, but the premier league is just one arena in the never ending battle of wits as to which team is better. Simba have already won the league title with 59 points which can not be reached by any of the closer contenders even if Yanga win today. Azam FC and Yanga are placed second and third, respectively.
Efforts of Azam FC who were challenging Simba in that position were reduced on Friday when Mtibwa Sugar nailed them 2-1 to pave way for Simba to beg the title.
Azam FC are second with 53 points and still have a game on hand, against Kagera Sugar, while Yanga have 49 points with only this game.
Simba chairman Aden Rage said yesterday today’s game is crucial to them as they can not celebrate their league victory without beating Yanga. “We will celebrate our victory after we beat Yanga,” he said, in typical fashion.
Yanga coach Fred Felix ‘Minziro’ said they will be out to maintain their respect of not being beaten by Simba in any recent encounter, noting that the Msimbazi Street side should not expect an easy evening.