September 18, 2021

Tanzania Mainland Premier League to kick off on September 6

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The local federation has confirmed dates to start the new season just two days after concluding the 2019-20 campaign

The Tanzania Football Federation (TFF) has picked September 9 as the date to kick off the 2020-21 Mainland Premier League campaign.

According to a statement from the federation obtained by Goal, the top-flight will kick off the season on Sunday, September 6.

The Division One league will then kick off on October 3, 2020, while the last division will start on November 7, 2020.

The domestic Cup, which is referred to as the Azam Cup, will start on November 28, 2020, while the mid-season transfer window will open on December 12, 2020, and will close on January 15, 2021.

Simba SC, who won three titles – Mainland Premier League, Community Shield, and FA Cup –  in the recently concluded campaign, will be keen to retain the titles when the season gets underway.

Simba won the league with six matches to spare after their closest challengers Young Africans (Yanga SC) and Azam FC failed to reach their tally of points, and they ended the season with 88 points, while Yanga came second and Azam third.

The Wekundu wa Msimbazi then went ahead to clinch a treble after beating Namungo FC 2-1 in the final of the FA Cup.

Simba will thus represent the country in the Caf Champions League whereas Namungo will participate in the Confederation Cup.

Currently, the transfer window is open for teams to sign players with the federation stating transfer business by the teams will be carried out within the month of August and there would be no additional time once the window slams shut.

The window was opened just after the conclusion of the top-flight and the lower leagues and some teams are now engaged in play-offs to determine who will get the promotion or relegation slots.

Yanga have been the busiest side in the ongoing transfer window so far as they have signed four players already and released 14.

According to the club, former Gor Mahia striker Gnamien Yikpe, who took much criticism last season, was axed alongside captain Papy Tshishimbi, who refused to renew his contract, and Congolese striker David Molinga have all been released.

Others dropped are veteran striker Mrisho Ngassa, Jafary Mohamed, Mohamed Issa Banka, Tariq Seif, Andrew Vincent Dante, Patrick Sibomana, Muharami Issa, Ali Ali, Rafael Daud, Ali Mtoni Sonso and Eric Kabamba.

Surprisingly, the club have retained controversial Ghanaian forward Bernard Morrison, who has missed training since the team suffered a humiliating 4-1 defeat against rivals Simba SC in the FA Cup semi-final and was since arrested under suspicion of marijuana possession.

Other played retained include Kenyan keeper Farouk Shikhalo, Metacha Mnata, Ramadhan Kabwili, Haruna Niyonzima, Lamine Moro, Bernard Morrison, Feisal Salum, Juma Mahadhi, Adeyum Saleh, Said Makapu, Balama Mapinduzi, Deus Kaseke, Ditram Nchimbi, Abdulaziz Makame, and Paul Godfrey.