Fifa friendly match
Burundi Vs. Rwanda
AMAVUBI coach Eric Nshimiyimana has named a 23-man squad for an international friendly match against Burundi due on March 5.
Both Rwanda and Burundi’s Swallows will use the game as part of preparations for the 2015 Nations Cup preliminary qualifiers, which will kick off in May.
The game will take place in Bujumbura, the capital of Rwanda’s southern neighbour.
Nshimiyimana named twenty home-based players and three international stars, including skipper Haruna Niyonzima [Young Africans], Salomon Nirisarike [Royal Antwerp] and AS Cannes striker Elias Uzamukunda, who returns to the Amavubi old after a four-year absence.
Meanwhile, Burundi’s German-born coach Rainer Wilfried named a 31-man squad, including ten professional players and 22 others who feature for domestic teams.
Wilfried included Rayon Sport’s top scorer Cedric Amissi in his squad.
Other professional players in the Swallows squad include; Midfielder Steve Nzigamasabo [Enugu Rangers-Nigeria], Fiston Razak [Sofapaka-Kenya], Simba SC pair of Gilbert Kaze and Tambwe Amissi, Valerie Nahayo [La Gantoise-Belgium] and Faty Papy [Bidvest Wits-South Africa].
Others include Didier Kavumbagu [Young Africans-Tanzania], Pierre Kwizera [Afad Jekano-Poland] and Saido Berahino [Cracovia-Poland].
In the latest Fifa world rankings, Burundi ranked 124th, ten places ahead of Rwanda.
Burundi’s home-based players are also fresh from taking part in the 2014 Africa Nations Championship [CHAN] in South Africa, where they failed to go past the group stage.
In their previous match, Burundi beat Rwanda 3-1 in an Afcon qualifier in Bujumbura.
After failed 2013 Afcon and 2014 Chan campaigns, Nshimiyimana has a tough job ahead of him; he needs to take Rwanda to the 2015 Afcon finals in Morocco.
Rwanda’s opponents in the preliminary round of the qualifiers will be known after the April 27 draws in Cairo.
Should Rwanda go past the preliminary round, it will one of the teams that will be in seven groups, each with four countries.
The top two teams from each pool will automatically qualify for the 2015 Orange Afcon finals alongside the best third-placed team from the groups.
In case of a tie between two teams in contention for the best third-place spot, a play-off will decide the one that qualifies.