Coronavirus: Simba SC ready for resumption even without foreign players – Mazingisa

Chances remain high for return of football activities in Tanzania following its suspension in March as a precaution against Covid-19

Simba SC are ready to take on their opponents even without key foreign players should the Mainland Premier League (VPL) resumes in their absence.

The clubs CEO Senzo Mazingisa said although they are waiting for the government to relax some restrictions on flights from foreign countries, they are ready to play their matches if the league returns.

Francis Kahata is in Kenya, Meddie Kagere, who has scored 19 goals and is on course to defend the Golden Boot, is in Rwanda, midfielder Clatous Chama is in Zambia while Sharaf Shiboub is in Sudan.

After Tanzania President John Pombe Magufuli signalled he would allow the resumption of the league soon earlier this month, teams are sweating on how to start joint training as soon as the government gives the green light.

“We will wait and see if the government will allow the landing of flights from foreign countries. If need be, we shall keep our returning players in mandatory quarantine after testing them of course,” Mazinigisa told Mwanaspoti.

“But if that will not be possible at all, then we will see what to do then.

“We are waiting for the green light to start our training sessions before the matches resume and we will do it even if our players would not have returned.

“We are confident we can fill their voids and play to the point that one might not notice some of our players are not there.”

On his part, Yanga SC head coach Luc Eymael said he is keen to return from Belgium and join his players although travel restrictions have been a major stumbling block.

“Yanga officials have been doing all they can to see that I return to the country because here in Belgium, things have started going back to their normal state,” the former AFC Leopards coach told the same publication.

Salum Madadi, the Tanzania Football Federation (TFF) director of competitions said they are waiting for the final word from government officials as far as the return of league action is concerned.

“We will conduct all that concerns us but when and how the league should resume is a mandate that only concerns the top government officials and not us,” Madadi said.

Finally, the government Spokesperson Hassan Abbas said there was no doubt on whether the top-flight will be allowed back.

“[The Mainland Premier League] will resume and its champion has to be decided on the pitch that is not debatable,” Abbas said.

It is almost two months since football were suspended in Tanzania as a measure to contain the spread of Covid-19.