Erasto Nyoni’s first half goal inspired Simba to a crucial 1-0 victory over 10-man Yanga at Benjamini Mkapa National Stadium in the 100th Premier League meetings between the arch rivals.
The former Azam man volleyed in a cross from Shiza Kichuya’s free kick in the 37th minute to help his team edge closer to the Premier League title this season.
The victory sees Pierre Lechantre’s men extend their lead at the top of the table to 14 points ahead of Yanga who have two games in hand. Also Simba extend their unbeaten league run to 26 this season with only 4 games to go.
Both teams started the game in high tension with Simba reaching in the opponent’s final third more often.
Yanga who were under caretaker coaches Noel Mwandila and Shadrack Nsajigwa decided to go with a more defensive approach which caused an isolation to Obrey Chirwa who played as lone striker throughout the game.
The approach did not seem to help Yanga as they went throughout the game without a corner kick compared to Simba’s 11.
Yanga’s right full-back, Hassan Kessy who was handed a huge task to stop Ugandan, Emmanuel Okwi and he was cautioned in the 38th after dissent towards the referee.
Four minutes after the restart, Kessy was shown a second yellow cards by referee Emmanuel Mwandembwa following his “senseless” foul on Asante Kwasi in Simba’s territory.
However, there was a stark improvement from Yanga after the break. Second half substitute Juma Mahadhi went close to an equalizer but his effort went wide.
The defeat left Yanga with a big mountain to climb and it now seems like their title challenge is over.
Yanga will now head to Algeria to face U.S.M Alger in the first game of Caf Confederation cup, group stage.
Simba: Aishi Manula, Nicholas Gyan/ Paul Bukaba (83), Asante Kwasi, Erasto Nyoni, Yusuph Mlipili, James Kotei, Jonas Mkude, Shomari Kapombe, Shiza Kichuya, John Bocco, Emmanuel Okwi
Yanga : Youthe Rostand, Hassan Kessy, Gadiel Michael, Vincente Andrew, Kelvin Yondani, Juma Said, Papy Tshishimbi/ Emmanuel Martin (80), Rafael Daud/ Juma Mahadhi (45), Yusuph Mhilu, Obrey Chirwa, Ibrahim Ajib / Pius Buswita (75)