Playoff round: Return leg
Rayon Sports vs Rivers United 3:30pm
Rayon Sports take on Rivers United today needing to win by a margin of three goals if they are to do what they have failed to do in the previous seven appearances in both CAF Champions League and Confederation Cup. That is reaching the group stage.
The Rwanda Peace Cup holders host their Nigerian opponents this afternoon in the return leg of CAF Confederation Cup playoff round at Amahoro National Stadium.
Djuma Masudi side have a tough task to overturn a 2-0 deficit from the first leg in Nigeria last Sunday at the Yakubu Gowon Stadium in Port Harcourt.
No Rwandan club has ever made it to group stages of either Champions League or Confederation Cup, but Rayon Sports, who have enjoyed excellent form in the national league this season where they lead the table by a whopping 11 points with seven matches left, will be aiming to defy the odds and make history.
“I am not God that I can tell you the outcome but what I am very sure of is that we have what it takes to defeat Rivers United and qualify,” Masudi told Saturday Sport yesterday.
But he was quick to add that, “I don’t want to talk a lot because it’s not me who will play but we are optimistic and we want to work for it, I urge our fans to turn up in big numbers, I believe their support can make a big difference, we need them tomorrow (today) more than ever.”
Masudi will be without key midfielder Fabrice Kakule Mugheni, who is suspended for the second leg match after receiving a yellow card during the first match, which was the second booking in two consecutive matches.
However, he will welcome back his top scorer Shassir Nahimana, who has scored 12 league goals but missed the first leg due to illness, and defender Ange Mutsinzi, who was suspended for the first leg.
Rivers United, who dropped to the CAF Confederation Cup after crashing from the Champions League, arrived in Kigali on Thursday night and are accommodated at Classic Hotel in Gikondo.
Upon arrival, the team head coach Stanely Eguma revealed that; “We have come to play a good game and win, Rayon Sports are a good team but we are here to play a different game compared to the first leg.”
Rivers United got their win in the first leg through goals from Emeka Atuloma and Guy Kuemian.
Teams that started first leg:
Rivers United: Sunday Rotimi, Ifeanyi Nweke, Zoumana Doumbia (Ojobo Markson 75’), Emeka Atuloma, Ayobami Asekunowo, Festus Austine, Bolaji Sakin, Kuemian Guy, Emeka Ogbugh, Esosa Igbinoba (Asamoah Godbless 58’) and Christian Weli (Nzube Anaezemba 69’)
Rayon Sports: Ndayishinye Eric, Nanei Thierry, Savio Nshuti, Gabriel Owgaso, Fiston Munefero, Niyoneina Seif (Mutuyimana Evariste 72’), Nova Bayaoua (Muhire Kevin 85’), Djabel Nanishimwe (Irambona Eric 63’), Moussa Camera, Kwieera Pierrot and Mugheni Fabrice