Thabit: Azam FC must bounce back against Yanga SC

Juma Kaseja of KMC vs Azam FC.
Azam FC.
The Chamazi-based official promises a quick response when they face their rivals in the league on Wednesday

Azam FC have stated their ambitions to bounce back from the weekend's defeat and beat rivals Young Africans (Yanga SC) in a Mainland Premier League match on Wednesday.

The Chamazi-based giants blew their chance to stretch their lead at the top of the 18-team league table after falling to a solitary goal against KMC in a match played at Uhuru Stadium on Saturday.

Reliant Lusajo scored the all-important goal after connecting with a pass from Hassan Kibunda to beat Azam keeper David Mapigano, and also hand the title-chasing club their second defeat of the 2020-21 campaign.

Ahead of their next league match against Yanga, Azam media officer Zakaria Thabit has promised the fans an immediate response from the defeat.

“We really worked hard against KMC but could not get anything from the match,” Thabit is quoted by Sokaletu. “It was a battle of who could take his chances, and KMC used their one chance and finished us off.

“But we must now forget about the match and focus on our next assignment, it is the derby against Yanga, we know we will be playing at home but all we need is a quick bounce back.

“We must win the tie, we will do everything to win the match for the fans, we hope the coach will see some of the mistakes the boys committed against KMC and rectify them, we want to be ready and get the points against Yanga.”

In an earlier interview, Azam assistant coach Vivier Bahati admitted they were outmuscled by KMC during the Saturday match and could not play their usual passing game and hence did not deserve to get anything at Uhuru Stadium in Dar es Salaam.

“I must accept that KMC overpowered us, they took control of the game and destabilised our style of play, in fact, they were the better team and deserved to win,” Bahati is quoted by Sokaletu.

Azam needed three points from the fixture to stretch their lead at the top of the 18-team table but despite the defeat, Bahati is confident they are still in the race for the title.

“In football sometimes, it comes a time when the players’ style is slowed down, they don’t play like they always do and that is what happened to our players, we were outshined and it is part of football,” Bahati continued.

“But the defeat does not mean we are now out of the race for the title, no, we know we still have a long way to go, and we must recover as quickly as we can and make sure we win our next match.

“The race for the title is still far to be decided and what we need to do now is recover, rectify our mistakes against KMC, and get ready for the next match.”

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The Chamazi-based giants suffered their first defeat of the season after going down 1-0 to Mtibwa Sugar at Jamhuri Stadium in Morogoro.

The winner between Azam and Yanga will move top of the table as the two teams are currently tied on 25 points from 11 matches.

Simba SC are third on 23 points after thrashing Coastal Union 7-0.