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Why I will be forced to name a new squad for Tanzania – Ndayiragije

09:31 EAT 25/03/2020
Tanzania “Taifa Stars” coach Etienne Ndayiragije.
The Burundian coach explains why he will go for a new squad for Taifa Stars when normalcy returns ahead of Afcon and Chan

Tanzania coach Etienne Ndayiragije has explained the reason he will be forced to name a new squad for the national team.

Taifa Stars were among several national teams on the continent which were affected by the abrupt suspension of the 2021 Africa Cup of the Nations (Afcon) qualifiers and this year’s Africa Nations Championship (Chan) finals, which were planned to kick off on April 4 to 25 in Cameroon.

The halting of both major competitions were taken as a step forward to prevent the rapid spread of the coronavirus, which has shaken the entire world with new cases and deaths reported daily.

Ndayiragije has now stated he will be compelled to name a different squad when normalcy returns saying the national team is called at a specific time based on the nature of their opponent and the competition.

“The squad I selected previously was to play against Tunisia in the Afcon qualifiers but when they announced the match was postponed, it means I will have to select another team,” Ndayiragije is quoted by Daily News.

“When the new dates are unveiled for both games, we will have to sit down again to select those players who will be fit then since most players are currently at their homes.

“If the league resumes and some of the players we called in the first squad are injured, do you expect to include them again in the team? No, that cannot happen.”

Young Africans (Yanga SC) midfielder Mapinduzi Balama had earned his debut call up in the national senior team squad, Taifa Stars, as Shomari Kapombe also made a comeback after a brief early retirement.

Apart from Balama, there were several other new faces in the squad, including Kelvin Kijiri (KMC), David Bryson (Gwambina), Dickson Job (Mtibwa), Said Makapu (Young Africans), Bryson Raphael (Azam FC), Reliant Lusajo (Namungo FC), Lucas Kikoti (Namungo FC) and Sixtus Sabilo from Polisi Tanzania.

Central defender Abdi Banda, who features for South African side, Highlands Park had also been recalled in the squad. Banda fell out with former Taifa Stars boss Emmanuel Amunike.