Race for Primus League reaches decisive moment

Saturday Marines         vs    Police APR         vs     Nyanza Amagaju     vs     Espoir Mukura         vs     Kiyovu Rayon Sports    vs     Etincelles Isonga         vs     La Jeunesse
Bonnie Mugabe
Bonnie Mugabe

Marines         vs    Police
APR         vs     Nyanza
Amagaju     vs     Espoir
Mukura         vs     Kiyovu
Rayon Sports    vs     Etincelles
Isonga         vs     La Jeunesse

Title hopefuls Police FC will be looking for nothing short of victory when they face a stern test against Marines at Umuganda stadium in their quest to win their first league title in eleven years of the club’s existence.

The Law and Order enforcers’, who have netted 34 goals conceded 13 this season and boast one of the sharpest striker-force in the league of Meddie Kagere and Laudit Mavugo to count on at this crucial moment.

The Amavubi forward, Kagere is the club’s top scorer with 12 league goals, one behind APR’s Olivier Karekezi, while Burundian international Mavugo has nine on his name. Both will be handy for the Marines defence as Police look to maintain the momentum going into the last two games of the season.

Going into what happens to be somewhat a decisive game in his team’s quest for the league crown, Police’s Serbian coach Goran Kopunovic remains buoyant.

 He said, “I am not afraid at all and my players are ready to play and win. It is going to be a tough but good game for us because we are very motivated.”

“Marines will definitely be as motivated to beat us (as it helps APR’s cause), but that’s ok with us. I just want fair refereeing and whoever wins, takes the points. We are confident,” noted Kopunovic, who is in his final year of his two-year contract.

Police sit in second position with 47 points, two behind leaders and defending champions APR, who however, have played two games more than their closest title challengers.

Chasing a record 13th league title in 17 seasons, APR will be away to relegation bound Nyanza Fc on Saturday in game they are expected to win and keep top spot heading the final weekend.

However, Kopunovic cautioned his players and fans against early celebrations just in case Police win in Rubavu on Saturday. “The season isn’t over yet, we can only celebrate after the final game when we are declared champions.”

Their opponent Marines are placed on eighth position with 25 points and coach Rajab Bizimuremyi is optimistic on his club’s chances of halting Police’s run.

Bizimuremyi said, “Our target since the start of the season was to finish in the top half but a top 7 is realistic and that means winning our next two games against Police and the derby against.”

“So Police should not expect any favours from us on Saturday,” stated Bizimurumreyi, who will be without first choice goalkeeper Ahmed Nshimiyimana.

A win for Police and the title could be their o lose, but they will be required to beat Mukura next Wednesday and their rescheduled game against Isonga to win the 2011/12 Primus National Football league title regardless of what APR do in their last two games.

If Police falter in the remaining matches, then it will be a repeat of 2009 when Atraco failed to win their final match against Marines to grant the title to APR.

Atraco which was disbanded needed a win in their final match against Marines to beat rivals APR to the league title but Marines, which alongside APR is funded by the Ministry of Defence, held their own and forced the game to end in a goalless draw, a result that gifted APR the title.

With stake so high in both APR and Police camp, will the Rubavu-based side be motivated by the desire to help out their sister club?

Elsewhere across the country, relegated side Espoir, having nothing to fight for, visit neighbors Amagaju in Nyamagabe.

Mukura host SC Kiyovu at Kamena stadium. Mukura, who wasted their chances of keeping in the title race following last week’s 1-all draw against AS Kigali, will be hoping to maintain their fine home form and keep third place.

On the other hand, Kiyovu who lost to APR 0-3 in their last match, will want to avenge their loss by beating Mukura and finish inside the top four.

Meanwhile, after their midweek victory over Isonga, Rayon Sports return to action against Etincelles.

Top scorers

1. Karekezi Olivier     (APR)    13
2. Kagere Meddie     (Police)-12
3. Ochaya Sylva         (Etincelles)-10
4. Mavugo Laudit     (Police)-9
5. Ruhinda Farouk Saifi     (Isonga)-7
Eric Serugaba         (SC Kiyovu)-7

Day 24 suspension
Hatungimana Deogratias     (Espoir)
Nduwimana Fidele     (AS Kigali)
Mbaraga Jimmy         (AS Kigali)
Mburenumwe Ibrahim     (Etincelles)


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