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Africa Cup of Nations

Afcon 2019: Tanzania president John Magufuli rallies support for Taifa Stars

09:56 SAST 2019/06/26
Emmanuel Amuneke - Tanzania
After their opening defeat to the Teranga Lions, Magufuli has called on his citizens to offer Emmanuel Amuneke’s men unwavering support

President of Tanzania John Magufuli has urged his countrymen not to relent in their support for the Taifa Stars following their defeat to Senegal in their opening 2019 Africa Cup of Nations game.

Goals from Keita Balde and Krepin Diatta condemned Emmanuel Amuneke’s men to a 2-0 loss at the 30 June Stadium on Sunday.

The Taifa Stars are making a return to the African showpiece after 39 years, having last featured in the tournament in 1980.

Notwithstanding the defeat against the best-ranked African side, Magufuli has charged Tanzanians to continue backing the team who helped them end their long wait of qualifying for the Afcon tournament.

“Let’s give the Taifa Stars morale support. We need to encourage the players. Despite losing to the number one team on the African continent,” he said, per the Citizens.

“They deserve commendations as the players are the ones who made the country qualify for the Africa Cup of Nations after a period of 39 years.”

The Taifa Stars will hope for a positive result when they take on their East African neighbours, Kenya in their second Group C match in the tournament on Thursday.

Tanzania are aiming to progress past the group stage of the continental competition for the first time in their history.