Taifa Stars need to step up performance- Samatta

03Jul 2019
The Guardian Reporter
The Guardian
Taifa Stars need to step up performance- Samatta

TAIFA Stars’ skipper Mbwana Samatta has disclosed the team has a long way to go to achieve success in competitions.

TAIFA Stars.

The Tanzania side lost all three matches in Group C of the AFCON finals to experience an early exit in the continental showpiece.

They suffered 2-0 to Senegal in the first match and then lost 3-2 to the East Africa neighbours Kenya in the following match.

Stars wound up the group stage with 3-0 loss to the eventual group leaders Algeria on Monday.

Stars for that matter ended at the last spot, posting two goals and leaking eight.

Samatta, who turns out for Belgium’s top flight club KRC Genk, noted he played his heart out throughout the group stage but he failed to help Stars secure qualification for the next round of the tournament.

“I did all I could to help my team excel in the event, but I was not in great shape,” he said.

“The AFCON finals are a big event… I thank god I featured in all matches and I’m fit. I think I need to work harder.”

“I have seen there is difficulty in facing stronger teams in this competition. We still have a long way to go… we thank God we have finished the event safely and we have got an opportunity to feature in this tournament.”

“It has been a learning experience for us, we need to step up our performance so we can live up to our expectations.”

Taifa Stars’ head coach Emmanuel Amunike, who missed key players, goalkeeper Aishi Manula and center back Kelvin Yondani who sustained injuries, went for changes in the team which locked horns with Algeria.

The Nigerian gaffer brought in keeper Metacha Mnata, forward Adi Yusuf, center back Ally Mtoni and left fullback Mohamed Hussein, who were benched in the previous two games, whilst handing Feisal Salum an offensive midfielder role.

Despite giving their all against Algeria, Taifa Stars could not withstand the North Africans’ onslaught, as Adam Ounas drilled in a brace and Islam Slimani slammed in the third to steer their squad to a third straight victory.