ALGERIA'S Entente Sportive Sétifienne coach Alain Geiger, feels that his side has been 'dropped into a den of lions' having to face Simba in a Confederation Cup first round, first leg clash at the National Stadium in Dar es Salaam on Sunday.
The Swiss coach predicts that his side will face a 'hostile' atmosphere but vowed to fight to the bitter end to get something from the game. But the challenge will not be easy and Geiger acknowledges the strengths of this weekend's opponent.
He said, "We know Simba is a strong team and have been following every bit of information about them. We're going to play very tactically because we know everything about Simba," he said.
He said Simba boast of remarkable record in continental championships including knocking out the then Champions League defending champions Zamalek from Egypt in 2003 and reaching the CAF Cup final in 1993.
"We're ready to challenge them. We know we are playing against a team which will have a huge advantage of the home crowd - but we will use all possible means to expose weak points of their team and to try to get a good result," the coach said. The Algerians who jetted in Dar es Salaam on Wednesday morning are struggling to cope with city's humid weather condition and this might add to home side advantage.
Setif boost of three professional players in their squad --French midfielder Sofiene_Zaaboub , Burkina Faso midfielder Kouamé Valentin and striker Cyrille Ndaney from Cameroon. Simba head coach, Milovan Cirkovic, hailed Entente Setif as strong team based on the Algerian outfit's performances in continental competitions, but Cirkovic expects his charges to take full advantage of playing at home and garner good result.
Milovan said he discovered Entente Setif potential threat through the club's website, which showed victories the latter garnered in various continental competitions' games and said his biggest task in the remaining few days will be to train his players intensively, apart from imparting useful tactics with a view to winning convincingly against the Algerians in the first leg.
He said Setif is one of great clubs in the continent and has a glorious history in both continental club competitions and domestic league. "I have read this team's history and its potential through the club's website...I have discovered that it is a good team and has won so many continental competitions' matches, thus, it is my duty to prepare my players well", insisted Cirkovic.
The mainland giants squeezed through to the Confederations Cup first round at the expense of SC Kiyovu of Rwanda on 3-2 aggregate. The two sides drew 1-1 in the first leg match played at the Nyamirambo Stadium in Kigali. The return leg duel, played at the National Stadium in Dar es Salaam after two weeks, saw Simba labour to beat the Rwandese side 2-1 to eventually progress to the first round.