National League Semifinal Preview

The Ethiopian national league semifinal games will be played today at Dire Dawa Stadium. Dire Dawa Kenema, Jimma Aba Bunna, Hossana Kenema and Halaba Kenema will face off each other in the decisive semifinal game to achieve promotion to the premier league. Soccer Ethiopia previewed the two crucial games.

Hossana Kenema vs. Halaba Kenema

Majority of the spectator didn’t expect Hossana Kenema to come all the way to the semifinal given their name status. They were in Group 4, which was labeled as group of death. Ironically Hossana made it to the quarter final by leaving the likes of Ethiopia Medhin, Debube Police and Ethiopia Water Sport. Hossana comprehensively beat Jimma Kenema in the quarter final and now they face their only obstacle to achieve promotion and become the 43rd club in the Ethiopian premier league history. Hossana is a south Ethiopia club. They are coached by Girma Tadesse. They have got two top players, Dula Mulatu and Tezera Abate. Tezera scored 3 goals so far and hopes to add more to his tally when his team faces Halaba. You can imagine Hossana’s strength. Their attack line is in a great shape. Coach Girma said no one could stop his team from going forward. Halaba Kenema, another South Ethiopian club, is coached by Temesgen Yilma. Eyasu Tamiru is the player to watch. He scored the crucial goal that took Halaba to the semis against Amhara Water Works. He agreed to join Ethiopia Bunna next season. Both Halaba and Hossana knew each other. That will make the game more interesting. The teams came from the same zone. They were both in Western Zone Group A. They played twice and each team got a win. In the first round Halaba beat Hossana two nil. In the second leg Hossana beat Halaba one nil. Both team’s coaches are confident that they will bring joy to their supporters. This game is going to be tightly contested given the team’s recent performance. All in all whoever wins they will participate in the premier league next season. So it is a do or die game.

Dire Dawa Kenema Coach Meserete Mane
Dire Dawa Kenema Coach Meserete Mane

Dire Dawa Kenema vs. Jimma Aba Bunna

Dire Dawa Kenema, coached by the only woman coach in the league, hopes to get promotion back to the premier league for the first time since 2011/12 season. The club is financed by the city administration. They topped their Group A and they beat Addis Ababa Ketema on penalties on their way to the semis. Coach Meserete Mane reckons the huge fan support will be a major factor in today’s game. Defensively the team is so good. They didn’t lose a single game thus far. They only conceded 4 goals in 6 games. In the contrary Dire Dawa scored 9 goals. Their striker Belay Abayneh is leading the top goal scoring chart with 5 goals and he will be the lethal weapon for Dire today. On the other hand Jimma Aba Bunna, a west Ethiopia team, never got promotion to the league. If they beat Dire Dawa, they will be the 44th club to take part in the premier league. Coached by Dereje Jimma Aba Bunna has got experienced players. Some of them even played in the top Ethiopian clubs. That is a big plus to the team and can definitely help them to achieve promotion. Biniam Haile and Minyahel Wendimu are among them. Midfielder Biniam previously played for Addis giants Ethiopia Bunna and Harar City while left back Minyahel played for Bank and Bunna. Although it is such a pity for Jimma fans that their left back Minyahel Wendimu is suspended for 4 games leaving him out of the semifinal game. Meanwhile, Jimma possess an attacking treat led by Nigerian Lucky Bariledum Sunni, who agreed to join premier league club Sidama Bunna. Jimma are so strong in the midfield and build up game something that Dire Dawa a little bit lacks. Biniam is a key player for Jimma. The player knows how to roll the ball. He is also a leader. Jimmaearned a hard fought victory in the quarter final by beating Federal Police on penalties. Both Dire Dawa and Jimma will go out to get the key victory.


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