Yanga SC have hit a U-turn and confirmed they are ready to face rivals Simba SC in their rescheduled Mainland Premier League fixture on July 3.
On Thursday, the Jangwani giants left the football fraternity in Tanzania in suspense after they claimed they only have four matches remaining to conclude the 2020-21 season, thus excluding the Karioakoo derby which was rescheduled after it failed to take place on May 8.
Yanga media officer Hassan Bumbuli made the comments and insisted they are already done with playing against Simba this season in the league and that their focus is on remaining matches against Ruvu Shooting, Mwadui FC, Ihefu FC, Dodoma Jiji, and also the FA Cup.
However, Bumbuli has clarified he did not say they are not going to face Simba but what he meant the game was not fresh in the calendar having been postponed from May 8 and hence the reason he stated they only have four matches remaining to finish the season.
What has been said?
“What I clearly said is we have only four fresh matches in our calendar to conclude the season and for the Simba game it is a scheduled game which we don’t want to count because it is not part of the fresh games we have not played before this season,” Bumbuli told Goal.Simba SC.
“Rescheduled matches are called matches in hand and not fresh matches and that is why I said this game is not in our plans, but I have not said we will not play against Simba.
“If [TFF] wants us to play Simba now, even today, even tonight [Friday], we are ready to play, but the fresh matches that we are planning for and the ones which even our coach and the technical bench are focused towards are the four matches, but the Simba and Yanga game is on, the game has not been removed and nothing will change.
“We are ready to play Simba any day and June 3 date is still on.”
TPLB warning to Yanga
Earlier on Friday, the Tanzania Premier League Board warned Yanga they will be relegated two divisions down from the top-tier if they make good on their threats and fail to face rivals Simba.
“We have rules that govern the sport in the country and they will be used if Yanga goes ahead and fail to face Simba, the rules are very clear any team that fails to honour a match will be relegated two divisions down,” Kasongo told Goal.
“The rules are not in force because Yanga have said what they have said but the rules are there for all teams to follow and they cut across all clubs in the top-flight, not alone Yanga, so they have to be very careful before doing what they want to do.”
The two giants have only met once this season with the first round contest ending in a 1-1 draw but they are also likely to meet in the domestic cup final if Simba beat Azam FC in their semi-final and Yanga overcome Biashara United.