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FKF Shield Cup: Sofapaka against Bandari will be like a final to – Baraza

09:41 GMT+3 13/03/2020
Sofapaka coach John Baraza.
Batoto ba Mungu will face their top-flight rivals in the Round of 16 of the knockout competition at Mbaraki Stadium on Saturday

Sofapaka coach John Baraza has promised a final-like contest when they take on Bandari in the FKF Shield Cup Round of 16 match on Saturday.

The two top-flight sides will square it out with the aim of advancing to the quarter-finals and with an eye on the Cup, whose winner pockets a ticket to represent Kenya in the Caf Confederation Cup.

“It’s going to be a massive game for both sides but so important for us as a team,” Baraza is quoted by the club’s official website.

“They are a good side especially at home and that will make it even harder but we are ready to face them.

"We haven’t had a good season and this an opportunity to revive ourselves and thus we are going to give our all in the match.

On the importance of the match; Baraza explained: “The match is so important to us because it presents a real opportunity to win a trophy this season and subsequently grace continental football.

"The club values the tournament because of the glory and pride that comes along with it. 

On the team's preparation; the former Harambee Stars striker said: “We have had good preparations so far, the players have been positive despite the setbacks we’ve had in our most recent matches. We have been working on our finishing and as well on our defending because we feel the two areas have been of concern.”

Baraza also revealed why the match against the Dockers is a must-win for his side: “Definitely yes, it’s a tie we as a club have to win to increase on our chances to being crowned champions of the tournament.

“Despite being a tough encounter, we have no other option but to win so as to advance to the quarter-finals and subsequently all the way to the finals of the FKF cup games.”

On injury concerns for the team ahead of the clash; Baraza stated: “From our medical department, we are doing pretty well as per Wednesday. We are at 90 % on the recovery process, we missed a couple of first-team players but since the beginning of the week, a number resumed training which is a plus for us.

“We just have a few knocks but we are hopeful they will be okay before the tie on Saturday.”