Three and 30: Yanga continue their domination

Three and 30: Yanga continue their domination
Joseph Guede Gnadou of Young Africans celebrates goal with teammates during the Tanzanian Premier League 2023/24 ©Loveness Bernard/BackpagePix

by Graeme Jackson

Tuesday May 14, 2024. 12:00

Young Africans SC have continued their domination of Tanzanian football after securing a third consecutive – and 30th overall – Mainland Premier League title on Monday.

Yanga defeated Mtibwa Sugar 3-1 away from home at the Manungu Complex in Morogoro to take their point tally to 71 from 27 matches – a total that neither second-placed Azam FC nor third-placed Simba SC – will be able to match in the remainder of the campaign.

Yanga found themselves a goal down to an opener from Mtibwa’s Charles Ilanfya, but the Dar es Salaam giants struck via Kennedy Musonda, an own goal from Nasir Kombo and Clement Mzize.

“It was not an easy match as Mtibwa Sugar fought hard in both halves,” Yanga coach Miguel Gamondi was quoted by The Citizen.

“I reminded my players to stay focused, especially considering that Mtibwa Sugar is battling relegation. Fortunately my players executed our game plan well.”

The title is a first under Gamondi, who was appointed in June 2023 and succeeded Nesreddine Nabi. The Tunisian had overseen the previous two championships in 2021-22 and 2022-23.

“I am proud of my players who are very committed and know what Yanga fans and members need from them,” said the Argentine tactician.

Young Africans’ success was built on a strong defensive solidity, as they have conceded just 13 goals in 27 league matches. Their attack has also been impressive, with 60 goals scored at an average of over two per match.

With domination of the domestic scene well under control, Yanga’s next ambition is to translate that success to continental competition.

They reached the final of the 2022-23 CAF Confederation Cup (ending as runners-up to USM Alger), while this season they got as far as the quarterfinals of the CAF Champions League before suffering a controversial exit at the hands of South Africa’s Mamelodi Sundowns.

Yanga will return to the Champions League in 2024-25, with Gamondi and his charges looking to establish the club as heavyweight players in the top-tier competition.

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