Simba head coach Milovan Cirkovic cut a frustrated figure after his side’s 2-0 defeat to URA in their opening match of the CECAFA Kagame Cup and the Serbian blamed the loss on injury.
Cirkovic cited the absence of Mainland Premier League player of the season, Shomari Kapombe, who was ruled out of the crucial opener due to injury and the fact that some of his players were returning from injury as the main reasons behind their shocking defeat to URA.
“We played without Kapombe he is very important for us and some of the players who played were just returning from injury,” lamented Cirkovic.Simba also missed the services of Salim Kinje, Said Nassoro, Lino Musombo and Victor Costa.
URA’s Feni Ali notched a brace to condemn the 2011 finalists to a soul-searching defeat in an entertaining game at the 60,000-seater National Stadium in Dar es Salaam on Sunday.”The first goal was very easy and that changed the game,” said Cirkovic but conceded that URA were a good team and deservedly won the match.
For his side, URA Coach Alex Isabirye was full of praise for his players saying the win has given them about 60% of qualifying for the quarterfinals.
Isabirye, whose side had never lost against Simba in a competitive match, reserved special praise for Ali who scored in either half while also commending his defence marshalled by former Simba player Derrick Walulya.
“I think the history has repeated itself. My players showed class as they demolished Simba and this was our plan going into the game to let them attack then hit back with counter attacks and our plans worked.”
“Winning the first match was important to us and now I want to focus on the next games since we cannot underrate any team despite the win today.
“My strategy is working effectively and I still believe we would have scored more goals with Feni upfront since the group stages will be decided mostly by the goal differences,” Isabirye told SuperSport.com in post match interview.Simba are in group A with URA, Vita Club of Congo DR and Ports of Djibouti.
The match-day two of the regional club championship went in a dramatic fashion as it saw 11 goals scored in three games.
The visitors are enjoying the upper hand ahead of the home clubs Simba, Yanga and Azam, who are yet to get a victory.
Vita Club who are taking part in the tournament as guest team started their campaign in style as they thrashed 7-0 past Djibouti’s AS Ports, to a game played at the Chamazi Stadium.
The first game of Group B, saw Zanzibar’s Mafunzo FC scoring in the final minutes of the game to secure a 1-1 draw with Azam, who got in front in the 26th minute of the game thanks to John Bocco’s strike.A total of 20 goals have been scored so far in the Kagame Cup 2012 in two days with just five games played.
Source Tanzania Daily News