YOUNG African striker, Aubrey Chirwa, might face disciplinary action following failure to travel with the team to Algeria to face MC Alger in a crucial CAF Confederation Cup playoff return leg in Algiers tomorrow.
The Jangwani street based club Secretary General Charles Boniface Mkwasa, said in Dar es Salaam yesterday that the club will take disciplinary action against the Zambian striker, who decided not to travel with the team to Algiers until the club pays his salary.
Mkwasa said the player refused to provide his passport to the club leaders, while they were making travel procedures to Algeria, demanding to be paid his three months salaries.
A contingent of 20 players was due to leave last night to Algeria ready for the match and Chirwa was among seven players who did not travel with the team.
“Immediately after the Algiers assignment, the striker will be summoned by the club’s disciplinary committee ... he will certainly be charged for his misconduct. “It is important for him to know that no player is bigger than the club,” Mkwasa was quoted saying yesterday during an interview with a local radio station in Dar es Salaam.
Yanga were due to leave in batches, with the first batch expected to jet off aboard Emirates Airline comprised skipper Nadir Haroub, Hassan Kessy, Said Juma Makapu, Simon Msuva, Geoffrey Mwashiuya, Juma Mahadhi and Amissi Tambwe.
Others include the team’s technical bench led by Head Coach George Lwandamina, his assistant Juma Mwambusi, Noel Mwandila and Juma Pondamali, team manager Hafidh Ally, physicians Edward Bavu and Jacob Onyango.
The second batch expected to jet off aboard Turkish Airline comprised Deogratius Munishi, Beno Kakolanya, Juma Abdul, Oscar Joshua, Mwinyi Haji, Andrew Vincent, Vincent Bossou and Kelvin Yondan, Thabani Kamusoko, Haruna Niyonzima, Deus Kaseke, Emmanuel Martin and Donald Ngoma.
Apart from Chirwa, other players who did not travel to Algiers are his compatriot midfielder Justin Zulu who is nursing injuries. Others are Ally Mustapha, Malimi Busungu, Matheo Anthony, Pato Ngonyani and Yusuf Mhilu.
With Chirwa out, Yanga will certainly miss him. The Zambian striker has recently been a key figure in the team, scoring crucial goals. He played a key role in the first leg win.
In the first leg match at the National Stadium in Dar es Salaam last Saturday, Yanga registered a slim 1-0 victory. Zimbabwean midfielder Thaban Kamusoko’s second half strike earned Yanga the important victory.
However, the Jangwani Street side will need to dig deep in their return leg away, to defend their slim lead and win a place into the group stage of the continental second tier club championship.
Availability of strikers - Ngoma and Tambwe - will provide perfect replacement in the absence of striker Chirwa. Ngoma, who has just recovered, played for some minutes in the first leg but Tambwe missed the previous game due to injury.
Yanga who are the only country’s flag bearer in the continental club level tournaments need a win or draw to ensure they progress into the lucrative group stage. However, with one nil cushion, it will be a tough mission, although any draw will earn Yanga a place into the group stage.
If Yanga manage to score an away goal, it will be a monumental task for Algerians. Yanga are involved in the Confederation Cup because they were among round-of-32 casualties in the much richer, more prestigious CAF Champions League after being knocked out by Zambia’s Zanaco FC last month.
They are among 16 losers demoted to the Confederation Cup, whose 1.25 million US dollars first prize is half that of the Champions League.