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Ndayiragije: Individual skills key for teamwork

TAIFA Stars Head Coach Etienne Ndayiragije said he is more focused looking on individual development of domestic players not team success so as to build a strong national team.

Ndayiragije was set to lead Stars to the battlefield in Cameroon for the 2020 African Nations Championship (CHAN) before they were postponed due to Covid-19 pandemic and the tournament has been moved to January next year.

But speaking recently, the coach said he is now satisfied with the performance from domestic players shown in their respective clubs while insisting that he is keen on individual development.

"As you know, most of the teams which are doing well in the country have a mixture of foreign based players as such, for me, I cannot hail the success of the entire team but rather how Tanzanians in such teams are performing. "I congratulate Simba for being the champions but my concern is not on them but the work rate of domestic players in the team," he said.

He added that the presence of foreign based players in local teams is very important because they give challenge to the domestic ones and also, they are of much help in international competitions.

"At the moment, I am working closely with the Tanzania Football Federation (TFF) to create another generation of national team players especially considering the fact that most of the current players are nearing to retire from football," said he.

Ndayiragije also mentioned that soon, they will name Under-23 national team which will have players who are ready to join the senior team.

Moreover, the coach said he has good cooperation with coaches of different clubs in the country a thing he described as healthy when it comes to assessing progress of players who have potential to be included in the national team.

"Now, many teams are not afraid to give youths a chance to play which is a positive thing and previously, when a team from outside Dar es Salaam came to play here, they were being beaten with many goals like six goals to nil but now, they fight and bring much resistance than before. This indicates that football has grown," he said.

To reach into the CHAN finals, Taifa Stars overturned a 1-0 defeat they suffered in Dar es Salaam to thrash Sudan 2-1 in a reverse match in Khartoum thanks to goals pumped in by Erasto Nyoni and Ditram Nchimbi.

Stars are packed in group D together with Guinea, Namibia and neighbours Zambia of which many pundits have described it as a fair group for the country's envoys.

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