Simba custodian still outstanding
Simba`s first choice goalkeeper Juma Kaseja remains the most outstanding among the locals for maintaining clean sheets at least beyond 180 minutes so far.
Kaseja, who briefly crossed to rivals Young Africans for the whole of the previous season, has so far conceded two goals in six appearances, the best record among the mainland premier soccer league custodians.
He conceded the first goal when Simba played Toto Africa on September 5 and another in the sixth round match against Moro United last week.
The Simba custodian has been consistently being picked in the team’s starting line-up by the Zambian coach Patrick Phiri since the league kicked off on August 23.
However, the Simba goalkeeper is presumably not yet tested to the limits as the premiership tide is just taking the heights.
After six rounds of play, Simba still have to wade through turbulent and highly competitive matches against formidable opponents in the likes of JKT Ruvu, Mtibwa Sugar, Azam FC and top rivals Young Africans.
The league leaders have conceded just two goals and are probably buoyed by formidable defenders who have been shielding their goalkeeper from lethal strikers.
The Simba custodian, who has been dropped by the Tanzania national team coach Brazilian Marcio Maximo since the 2008 African Nations qualifier series in 2007, has been able to maintain his form in derbies.
The Zambian coach Phiri still insists to keep Kaseja between the posts for most of the rest of the premiership season depending on his form and physical fitness.
While it’s too early to predict who would win the best goalkeeping award at the end of the season, Kaseja looks well set to claim it should he maintain the pace.
Taifa Stars first choice goalkeeper Juma Dihile, who has not been fielded frequently by his coach Charles Kilinda, is still far from matching Kaseja’s brilliance in the premiership so far.
Ruvu JKT have conceded eight goals regardless of who was between the post since the league kicked off in August.
The sixth placed Ruvu JKT are far from impressive in their recent matches after dropping precious points to premiership sides they used to beat easily during the previous season(s).
Analysis of goalkeepers also suggests that Young African’s Serbian import Obren Curcovic and Mtibwa Sugar’s Shaaban Kado rank high.
However, the prowess of goalkeepers bank heavily on how tight is their respective defence line-ups.
Both Yanga and Mtibwa teams have conceded five goals apiece as the seventh round of the league comes to the end this weekend.