Young Africans (Yanga SC) coach Luc Eymael has confessed it will not be possible to catch up with run-away leaders Simba SC when the Mainland Premier League resumes.
The top-flight was halted in mid-March owing to the coronavirus pandemic but on Thursday, Tanzania President John Pombe Magufuli gave the green light for the league to resume after June 1.
While welcoming to move to resume the league, the Belgian coach has told Goal they will put more focus on winning the domestic cup because “it will not be possible to reach Simba.”
“It is impossible to win the league, if we win the league it will be a big miracle, the gap [between Yanga and Simba] was too big when I arrived and we cannot be champions this season,” Eymael told Goal on Friday.
“Our focus now is to make sure we finish on the best position and that can be possible, especially finish in the second place behind Simba.”
Yanga are still chasing the domestic Cup as they are among the teams in the Round of 16 and Eymael is confident they can win the competition.
“The cup is our target, to win a trophy is our target and we will do our best to make sure we are crowned champions of the domestic cup, for sure we will fight as it also gives us a ticket to continental football next season,” the Belgian tactician added.
Eymael has also assured Yanga fans he will arrive in Dar es Saalam on May 31 to start work ahead of the league’s resumption.
“Yes, I have been informed the airport has been re-opened and now the league will not start directly, I think they will give us ten days or two weeks, and then we can play two matches a day and I think in five weeks we will be able to finish the league,” Eymael continued.
“I am just waiting now for the arrangement for the ticket from the club and for the travel because everything seems to be ready now, and the only flight available [Lufthansa flight] will only arrive in Tanzania on May 31, that is the only time I can get the chance to travel.”
Before the break, most teams had played 28 matches out of 38 – defending champions Simba SC are on top of the table with 71 points after winning 23 matches, drawn two and lost three.
Azam FC, who had played the same number of matches, are second with 54 points after winning 16 games, drawing six and lost as many.
The 27-time league champions Yanga SC had won 14 matches, drawn nine and lost four in the 27 games played.