Ibenge opens up on coaching Simba SC

14Jan 2021
Nassir Nchimbi
Dar es Salaam
The Guardian
Ibenge opens up on coaching Simba SC

Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) national football team's head coach, Florent Ibenge, has disclosed he is aware that Tanzania's Premier League defending champions Simba SC needs his services as the side's head coach.

Florent Ibenge

Ibenge issued the statement during the post-match interview of an international friendly game between DRC team and Tanzania's Taifa Stars, played at Dar es Salaam's Benjamin Mkapa Stadium on Tuesday. The Taifa Stars drew 1-1 with DRC squad.

He said that many times the biggest clubs in Tanzania, Simba, Yanga and Azam FC, have been asking for his services when they are looking for a new coach but now, he is the DRC team's coach along with coaching DRC's AS Vita Club.

He stated: "Simba are a big and competitive team in the Mainland Premier League as well as the CAF Champions League, I can't deny that.''

He disclosed: ''I'm ready to one day come and coach Simba because it is a big club and it has high expectations so I would like to coach such a club like this, I know they need my services and that is clear.''

''Simba, last season, needed me but the problem is that I'm currently a coach for AS Vita Club and DRC national team.''

Asked if there is a possibility of coaching Simba in the CAF Champions League group stage, he said: "If I didn't have a team then I would say how it will happen but for now let's wait and see and because I will come here in Dar es salaam with AS Vita Club to play against Simba and make sure we win and go to the quarterfinals of the competition.”

Commenting on the CAF Champions League's Group A, which has such teams like AS Vita Club, Simba and Egypt's Al Ahly, he said: “Finishing first or second in our group is our goal because, the group is similar to the one in 2018.''

''It has not changed much. There is only the arrival of one new team (Al-Merreikh of Sudan), but, as for all the others, we played with them two years ago and we won against all of them, we beat Al Ahly and Simba in Kinshasa,'' Ibenge said.

Ibengé, aged 59, was born in Léopoldville on December 4 1961. He was manager of Chinese club, Shanghai Shenhua, from April to May 2012, and he later coached DRC national team and AS Vita Club from February 2014.

He became the DRC national team's head coach in August 2014, combining this role with his job at AS Vita Club to this very moment.

He led DRC national team to the 2016 African Nations Championship (CHAN) title in Rwanda in February, 2016, after beating Mali by 3-0 to achieve the glory.

In March 2017, he announced that he intended to step down as national team's head coach in 2018. He resigned in August 2019, a spell which did not last long until he returned last year.

He also led DRC to three Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) tournaments, he also made AS Vita Club a regular competitor in CAF Champions League, making it to the event's group stage every season...read more on https://epaper.ippmedia.com