Tanzania: Mkwasa Picks Taifa Stars Squad Tuesday to Face Eagles

The national soccer team, Taifa Stars, will move into a one-week residential training in Dar es Salaam on August 1, to prepare for their 2017 Africa Nations Cup (AFCON) qualifiers clash against Nigeria's Super Eagles.

On Tuesday, Stars coach, Charles Boniface Mkwasa, will name the players who form the squad the mere formality Group G match in Lagos on September 2, this year Mkwasa popularly known as 'Master,' said the camp aims to prepare players psychologically and technically for the away game. He said Stars will then regroup for another camp at the end of August, few days before the team's departure to Lagos.

Mkwasa is expected to retain most of the players who featured in the previous matches in the group, but he hinted the inclusion of several new faces especially youth.

"My squad will involve majority of youth because I believe in their ability to excel," he said, adding that he will also scout for more quality players when the Mainland Premier League starts next month. Seven-time African champions Egypt have already qualified for the finals in Gabon after finishing top of the group on ten points.

Taifa Stars are bottom of the group with only one point, while Nigeria have two points. After Chad's withdrawal, the runners-up can no longer qualify as one of the two runners-up with the best records, as any groups reduced to just three teams have only the group winner qualifying for the finals and are not considered when determining the best secondplaced teams.

Meanwhile, the Nigeria Football Federation has confirmed Salisu Yusuf as the Super Eagles' chief coach as it continues the search for a technical advisor. Paul Le Guen and the NFF failed to agree terms for the Frenchman to take the role, despite an announcement from the country's football federation.

The Frenchman had been named by the Nigerian Football Federation, which said he would work alongside Yusuf. But the two parties could not come to a deal over a contract. It is unclear how the two roles are to be defined but former Nigeria coaches Clemens Westerhof and Jo Bonfrere - both had the official title of technical advisor.

The federation's executive committee met today and approved the appointment of Yusuf, who was caretaker coach for friendly wins against Mali and Luxembourg in May. At the same meeting, the NFF's technical and development sub-committee was asked to recommend a candidate for the post of 'technical advisor' within the next seven days.

The NFF said it had not been able to reach agreement on targets for the job or over where Le Guen would be based. The secretary-general of the NFF told the BBC that Le Guen had "rejected our terms." French football reporter Herve Penot, a friend of the coach, told Sport Today on the BBC World Service that Le Guen had discussions but had never agreed a deal. "He met the president of the federation, his requests were not met so that was it - it was finished," he said.

A later statement from the NFF said it had "no issue with Le Guen, saying he is not coming; several highly-qualified persons would be happy to coach Nigeria."

Source: Tanzania Daily News