Atraco set to revamp squad

The 2007/08 national league champion Atraco is expected to revamp the squad ahead of next year’s MTN/African Champions League.

The 2007/08 national league champion Atraco is expected to revamp the squad ahead of next year’s MTN/African Champions League.

Atraco head coach Sam Timbe told Times Sport recently that he would like to reinforce his squad before playing away to Sudan’s El Merreikh in the first leg of the African Champions league set for January 30-February 2, 2009.

“I would like to add a few players in the side before the champions’ league,” Timbe said. However, Atraco’s vice president Issa Ngenzi finds no reason of reinforcing the taxi-men club.

“We will not recruit any new player. We feel the squad has enough experience to compete in the champions’ league,” said Ngenzi.

In the league, Atraco has already lost to APR, Rayon Sport and Kibuye and many feel that unless the club steps up on its league form, they may not get past the preliminary stage of the African Champions league.

The club is expected to make its maiden African champions league debut away to Sudan’s El Merreikh on the weekend of January 30-February 2, 2009 before hosting the Sudan champions in a second leg clash two weeks later.

The taxi-men club should expect a tough challenge against Merreikh following this year’s 0-3 drubbing of Rayon Sport in the Confederation cup.

Atraco’s last continental appearance was during the 2006/07 season under Coach Sam Ssimbwa when the club failed to go beyond the second round of the Confederation Cup.

Having defeated Burundi’s Prince Louis 3-0 and Ethiopia’s Defense 2-0 on aggregates respectively, Atraco lost to Tunisia’s Gafsa after a 3-all aggregate, a feat which granted Gafsa qualification to the next round after scoring two away goals in a 2-all draw in Kigali.

The winner between Atraco and Merreikh will face Libya’s Ittihad in the first round of the African Champions league. Ittihad got a bye to the first round.

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