Azam FC coach Aristica Cioaba has revealed teams in the Mainland Premier League are all pointing guns at beating his team, who are still unbeaten in the top-flight.
The Chamazi-based giants are currently leading the 18-team league table on 21 points after winning all their seven matches played so far this campaign.
As they prepare to face Mtibwa Sugar on Monday, the Romanian tactician has admitted his players are under pressure to keep the good run going because all the teams are now looking at stopping what they have achieved so far this season.
“It is part of football because you know every team now wants to beat Azam,” Cioaba told Azam FC TV. “But so far, my response from the team is very good as we head into the Mtibwa match, I don’t want them to lose concentration, I have talked to them and told them what it takes to be champions.
“They are now feeling the pressure which comes when you want to be a champion and all I want them to do is to concentrate. I want us to take maximum points from every game, every time I like my players how they are psyched, they want to fight for every point, and it is the kind of attitude I want in the team.”
On what to expect from Mtibwa Sugar, Cioaba said: “Last season we drew against Mtibwa away and won at home but they are a very good team, they are a fighting team, we must be ready to deal with them, we must be prepared and play as a team.
“I also have one player injured and also one player suspended because of accumulated cards, but we don’t have to worry about that, we have good replacements to step in and do the job.”
Azam assistant captain Frank Domayo also stressed the importance of getting maximum points against the Sugar Millers.
“We are very impressed with how our training has been going on, everyone is okay, the players are in good shape, but we all know Mtibwa is a very good team, a tough team to play against in the league and well know that, but we have received good advice from our coach ahead of the match,” Domayo told Azam FC TV.
“Our main target is to get three points, we will fight for that and we all know that every team is now targeting to beat Azam, they will come with the pressure to end our perfect run, so we must be ready to hit back and stop them and we know are ready as players.
"We will work as a team, we have planned on how to play and we also want our fans to come in large numbers and support us.”
On his part, striker Prince Dube said: “For me, I am always ready for each and every game, I always want to give 100 percent and I know we will come up with the three points, we know Mtibwa are a good team but we will put up an extra effort to get what we want.
“For now, I want to do my best for Azam, I want to keep scoring the goals and see how far we can go this campaign.”
The ‘Ice Cream Makers’ and second-placed Young Africans (Yanga SC) are the only unbeaten sides in the league.