After a thrilling 2-2 draw in the first leg in Dar es Salaam on Friday, Simba and Al Ahly travel to Cairo for an all-out approach second leg on Tuesday, each hoping to draw the final arrow from the quiver that will kill their opponent and send them to the semi-final of the African Football League.
Ahly will have a slight advantage after scoring two away goals, and will need either a win or a draw of less then two goals to advance to the semi-finals.
Head coach Marcel Koller has admitted the match will be difficult, but reiterates they will map out a game plan that sails them into the last four.
“The 2-2 result is acceptable for us heading back to Egypt. We play at home and we will give our best to ensure we win. It will not be easy, but we will work hard to earn what is deserved for us,” the Swiss tactician said after the game.
Looking back at his side’s performance, he was delighted with how they managed and controlled the game, and the mature performance exhibited by his side.
“We played very well especially in the first half and even before we scored, we had three clear chances that we should have converted. In the second half Simba came back stronger but we showed good character to score immediately after conceding,” noted Koller.
Meanwhile, Simba will have their work cut out in the Egyptian capital, as they also need a win or a high scoring draw to progress to the semis.
Coach Roberto Oliveira has acknowledged that they face a massive task ahead of them, but remains optimistic and confident they can get over the line.
“Always, my objective as a coach is to play well and win. I don’t play to defend, I am a positive man and I will do everything to win. We need to show our capacity and I am positive we can go away and put a good performance to win,” noted the Brazilian tactician.
Simba showed an improved performance in the second half against Ahly in Dar, and Oliveira attributed this to a change in team shape and personell.
“We noticed that we were losing both the first and the second ball and that is why we brought Kanoute (Sadio) in so that he can play with Fabrice (Ngoma) in midfield. We improved a lot in this and controlled the game,” said the coach.
He added; “We played againat a very strong team and with a lot of experience in African football. It was a game of two halves; first half for Ahly, second half for Simba. There is a lot of positives we can pick heading into the return tie.”
Simba travel to Cairo on Saturday, with the game set for Tuesday evening.