RECORDS are made to be broken only if they are snappable vinyl, but they are not if they are golden ones, Simba’s 42-year away comeback tells it all.
For over four decades, it has remained unbroken despite several attempts in many football matches staged in different venues of Africa.
It is a record that brightly colours Simba and Tanzania at the continental level football, and to some extent its impact is felt globally.
Simba’s comeback record stamped away in Lusaka, Zambia unmistakably deserves a golden class record for it has not broken for 41 years.
A rare feat for the country whose football is struggling to hit continental mileage, while the defeated Zambian opponents; Mufulira Wonderers came from the nation whose level of football is superior to Tanzania.
The unbroken away comeback record in CAF Champions League that was notched 42 years now has to be recalled as Simba stare at the exit door of the continental top tier club championship.
Simba need to score five clear goals to sail into the semifinals of the continental top tier club championship, after they suffered a humiliating 4-0 defeat away to Kaizer Chiefs at FNB Stadium in Johannesburg, South Africa in the first leg encounter last Saturday.
Former Simba defender, Daud Salum is confident that the Reds could do wonders and turn tables against Kaizer Chiefs in a reverse CAF Champions League quarterfinal match at the Benjamin Mkapa Stadium in Dar es Salaam on Saturday.
Salum who paraded as Simba right full back, said in 1979, Simba were hammered 4-0 by Mufulira Wanderers at the then National Stadium, now Uhuru Stadium in Dar es Salaam, a result which made people believe that they had been eliminated in the then version of CAF CL, but when they went for the reverse match in Lusaka, Zambia, Simba won 5-0.
After the Lusaka match, Zambia fan number one, the then President Kenneth Kaunda shed tears after Mufulira’s historic loss to Simba.
“Indeed, after the drubbing Simba had been subjected to by the Zambians on that day 42 years ago, all Tanzanians including Simba fans had written off their team but we went on to win away.
“It is hard to believe that Simba can turn down the tables on Saturday but in football everything is possible,” Salum said.
“Players then played with passion of their team, we fought for the team because many of us were members of the club and the heavy defeat we succumbed at home was painful to us.
“I remember the late Joel Bendera, who was then Taifa Stars coach, was momentarily hired by Simba and he used to psychologically build us in readiness for the match.
“He first told us that if they managed to win 4-0 away, we can also get the same number of goals at their home.
“Every player knew his responsibilities; we were fully prepared and left to Zambia for the return match. While we were there, people said we would lose 10-0.
“We were desperate but inside our hearts, everybody knew what we had to do. In reality, we were well prepared, we respected our job.
We carried hearts of Tanzanians and this is what should be done by the current Simba players,” he said.
He continued that on the match day, there were three major events which happened and the guest of honour was then Zambia President Kenneth Kaunda.
“I remember the first event was the football match between Members of Parliament versus ministers and the other event was boxing between a Zambian boxer (name forgotten) against his counterpart from outside Zambia.
All these two events were done before our match and the stadium was full to capacity. “In the 3rd minute of the game, we scored a goal and afterwards, we scored another goal and by halftime, we were leading with three goals.
At the interval, coach Bendera told us that it was possible to get two more goals, we should work hard. “Indeed, we worked hard and got the fourth goal which made them nervous hence they conceded the fifth goal in the process, something which was unbelievable.
We then qualified to the next round,” said Salum, while insisting that the current Simba squad can equally do the same.
Furthermore, Salum said their team had many decorated players like goalkeeper Athumani Mambosasa, Mohammed Kajole, Thuwein Ally, Abdallah Mwinyimkuu, George Kulagwa, Omary Gumbo and others.
“Even the current Simba team has got the quality players; it’s just a matter of preparing well. I believe they can do wonders but it is not that easy.
They must fight hard and the decision whether to excel or not is theirs. “They should think about pain which Simba fans and members are going through after their recent defeat.
They need to be hopeful that if their colleagues succeeded at their home, they too can achieve. Another loss will damage their work,” he said.