Simba were crowned Tanzania FA Cup winners after a 2-1 victory after extra time over Mbao on Saturday (May 27) at the Jamhuri Stadium, Dodoma.
The game ended goalless in regulation time before Simba wrapped up the tie in extra time. Fredrick Blagnon gave Simba the lead on 95 minutes before substitute Rajish Kotecha restored parity for Mbao minutes later. Shiza Kichuya scored at the death of the game to hand Simba victory and a ticket to represent Tanzania in next year’s Total CAF Confederation Cup plus the 25,000 US dollar prize-money.
It was expected to be an easy win for the ‘Reds and White” as Simba are nicknamed, but it turned out to be different due to their poor composure in the final third and the outstanding performance of Mbao centre backs, Yusuf Ndikumana and Kwasi Asante.
Simba squandered more than five clear chances in regular play through Burundian import, Laudit Mavugo and Juma Liuzio.
Substitute Blagnon scored the opener in the fifth minute of extra time but Mbao fought back and after several attempts, Kotecha scored the equalizer 14 minutes later.
Three minutes from time, Simba were awarded a penalty after Asante was adjudged to have handled in the vital area and Kichuya made no mistake in putting the ball at the back of the net.
Simba head coach, Joseph Omog could not hide his joy, whilst admitting the game “was the toughest ever in his coaching career.
“I didn’t expect that Mbao could be this competitive. They played well from the defence to the attack. It was a real tough game.
“Mbao played with high discipline and built attacks collectively. It was not easy for us to counter. I’m happy that we have won major silverware this season and next season we will feature in the CAF tournament”.