A newly professional club, Azam FC’s rise in Tanzanian football has been nothing short of meteoric, and when the draw for next year’s is made, the seven-year old club will be in the mix. tells the story of this unlikely newcomer on the African football scene.Azam was formed out of the need of workers from one of the companies belonging to the Bakhresa Group, the Mzizima wheat flour factory to keep healthy and do something in their spare time. They did well in the lower leagues and were given financial blessing by Mr. Abubakar Bakhresa, the director of the company, to pursue life as a football club. Within a few seasons of having received support from the Bakhresa Group in 2007 Fut 15 Coins, the club was campaigning in the Tanzanian Premier League. An eighth-place finish in their first season, was followed by a third place and then a pair of runners-up spots in the league before they won the domestic trophy for the first time this year – just seven years after their founding.
The recent success coincides with arrival at the club of German-trained coach Joseph Marius Omog who took Congo club AC Leopards to a sensational win in the CAF Confederations Cup in 2012 and a year later to the group phase of the Champions League. Azam fans are hoping he will duplicate that level of success with their club.But it is not only on the field of play that the club see their mission. Nassor Idrissa Fut 15 Coins , who is one of the founding members of the club and is currently its general-secretary, explained that the club is part of the business and cultural life of the country. “In our case football not only provides employment, but also pleasure to Tanzanian football lovers and it contributes to the development of the national sport.”
And although the biggest part of the club’s income still comes from the Bakhresa Group, they are working on plans to ensure that the entity will be self-sufficient within the foreseeable future. “We aim to achieve that through sponsorship, merchandising and transfers,” said Idrissa.Azam invests heavily in youth development and the success of this program is clearly evident as several youngsters from the club’s academy, have been called up to the senior national team – a remarkable half-dozen players still in their teens. One of those players Aishi Manula Fut 15 Coins , who competes with his older brother Mwadini for the No1 jersey, joined the club as a 15-year-old explains the upward trend of Azam.
“The club gave me not just football training but also accommodation and education. I am not sure if other clubs do that for young players, but I feel privileged to be one of the few players to get this opportunity. Azam is the only club in with world class training facilities. I am sure most players dream to be part of Azam FC to have access to all these facilities.”
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