19 August 2017

Rwanda/Uganda: Amavubi in a Do-or-Die Clash Against Uganda

Photo: The Observer
Cranes interim coach Moses Basena, second left, and his players celebrate after dumping Rwanda to qualify for 2018 Chan finals

Rwanda national football team (Amavubi) will need to score three or more goals without conceding when they face Uganda in the second leg of the CHAN 2018 third round qualifiers at Kigali Stadium today to stand a chance of reaching the finals tournament in Kenya.

Uganda lead 3-0 from the first leg played last Saturday at St. Mary's Kitende Stadium in Kampala and failure to score four goals without reply will mean the end of Rwanda's hopes of qualifying for the finals tournament.

The aggregate winner will book a ticket to represent the Eastern and Central Africa region at the finals scheduled to take place from January 11 to February 2 next year.

Realistically, it's hard to see Amavubi overturn the 3-0 deficit but head coach Antoine Hey believes his troops can still turn the tie around, "We expect a tough game but we have to be confident and believe that we can do a lot better in front of our fans."

"Last weekend, we conceded an early penalty, which somehow unsettled us and we never really recovered from falling behind so early in that way, but we've worked on avoiding some of the mistakes we made in the first leg, it's not over yet, anything can happen," he insisted.

Last Saturday, striker Muzamir Mutyaba netted a first-half brace and Derrick Nsibambi added the third goal early in the second-half to hand Moses Basena's team a commanding lead.

Uganda arrived in the country on Thursday afternoon and the team held a light training session at Kigali stadium on Friday morning.

Even without striker Sugira Ernest, who suffered a closed fractured tibia during a training session, Hey says the available players are "composed and ready to give their all."

Team captain and first choice goalkeeper, Eric 'Bakame' Ndayishimiye will be back in action after missing the first leg against Uganda through suspension.

Rwanda is seeking a third appearance in this biennial tournament after the 2011 edition in Sudan and the 2016 edition staged in Kigali where Amavubi reached the quarter-finals before losing 2-1 in extra-time to the eventual champions, DR Congo.


Second leg

Rwanda vs Uganda (0-3) 3:30pm

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