FOOTBALL fans have hailed massive support that Serengeti Premium Lager (SBL) has been providing to Taifa Stars for the past three years, leading to the team’s recent good performance.
The fans, among them retired Taifa Stars players, have urged for continued support by SBL to maintain the newfound good run by the team.
In May 2017, SBL entered into a three-year agreement with Tanzania Football Federation (TFF) valued at 2.1b/-that saw the brewer’s flagship beer brand become the official sponsor of the national team.
Ally Mayai, alias ‘Tembele’, a retired Taifa Stars player and current football analyst, said the SBL sponsorship towards the team was huge and commendable, adding that it had revolutionised the country’s football.
“The deal involves quite a lot of money and we have seen its immediate impact on our football as demonstrated by the national team’s improved FIFA rankings. We need to appreciate this support by SBL,” said Mayai, who also captained Taifa Stars between 1996 and 2004.
Another retired Taifa Stars player, Mohammed Hussein, alias ‘Mmachinga’ commended SBL’s efforts, saying the sponsorship enabled the national team register unprecedented successes in recent years.
“It is within this period that we have seen our national team taking part in big tournaments like the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON). Similarly, it is during this sponsorship that we have witnessed Taifa Stars qualify for African Nations Championships (CHAN). I hope these streams of successes will inspire SBL to continue supporting the team,” enthused Hussein.
Another fan from Arusha, who identified himself as Samson Kivuyo said while most sponsorship packages were centred on attracting the attention of fans to brands that for SBL has been unique in many ways.
“We have witnessed SBL mobilise fans to support the national team through billboards, TVs and radio campaigns throughout the country, team performance results notwithstanding. This has strongly motivated the fans to rally behind Taifa Stars strongly than ever before,” Kivuyo said.
Hassanal Ochen from Mikocheni in Dar es Salaam was equally elated about the sponsorship, noting that with the huge support, the sky now appears to be the limit for the national team.
“Last year we saw our national team taking part in the continent’s most prestigious tournament, the AFCON, after 39 years. This did not come by accident; It was due to adequate preparations facilitated by the sponsor. We request SBL to keep on supporting the team,” Ochen said.