Rwanda Vs Ethiopia 3:30pm
Ethiopian national team (Walia Ibex) arrived in Kigali Friday afternoon ahead of the CHAN 2018 play-off qualifier second leg against Rwanda on Sunday at Kigali Stadium in Nyamirambo.
The 27-man delegation, led by head coach Ashenafi Bekele, is being accommodated at Galaxy Hotel in Remera, City of Kigali.
Bekele believes that his side, that lost 2-3 in the first leg in Addis Ababa last weekend, can turn things around and qualify for Africa’s second biggest football tournament that will be staged from January 12 through February 4 in Morocco.
“We had a bad game in the first leg but the second leg will be deferent, for sure. The goals we conceded left us demoralised and I went to apologise to the (Ethiopian) public,” Bekele said on arrival in Kigali.
He noted, “We are coming to look for a better result and it is possible. I take full responsibility for the loss but we are ready to turn things around. We don’t really know what will happen, we are prepared to give our best.”
Rwanda needs a goalless draw on Sunday to be able to qualify to next year’s finals tournament, which will be their third, following 2011 in Sudan and last year in Kigali.
The match will be handled by Somaliland referees, Mohamed Hagi, Hamza Hagi Abdi, Salah Omar Abukar and Bashir Olad Arab, while Burundian Aimable Habimana will be the match commissioner.
The away win puts Amavubi in a commanding position to qualify to next year’s tournament which is reserved for players featuring in their respective domestic championships.
In the first leg, Girma Aschalew gave Ethiopia the lead in the 18th minute and the hosts held on until the 55th minute when Rayon Sports left-back Eric Rutanga equalised for Amavubi with wonderful free kick.
The Wallias restored their lead in the 65th minute through Abubakher Sanni but Muhadjir Hakizimana leveled again for Rwanda in the 78th minute before Police FC striker Abeddy Biramahire scored the winner two minute later.
Meanwhile, Ethiopia’s Walia Ibex will be without injured influential striker Girma for the second leg. The 21-year old St. George SC forward suffered a knee injury in a training session and failed to recover in time for their flight to Kigali. He has been replaced by St. George teammate Dukele Dawa Hotessa.
Bekele Meles Beharu, Tefera Ashenafi Bekele, Mirutse Belete Gebrekidan, Kemal Zerihun Shengeta, Hagos Tsegazeab Asgedom, Desta Yishak Shifferaw, Mengesha Assefa Tesfaye, Welda Hailu Awegcho, Aynekulu Lealem Birhanu, Bushura Jemal Tasew, Seyoum Aschalew Tamene, Igata DestaYohannes, Bolado Mulualem Mesfen, Hussen Saladin Bargecho, Gibeto Getaneh Kebede, Ayele Firew Selemon, Umema Mentsenot Adane, Dukele Dawa Hotessa, Melka Aschalew Girma, BuneA Abebaw Butako, Musssa Mesud Mohammed, Alemu Samson Tilahun, Medelcho Eshetu Mena, Abdela Abubeker Sani, Amede Ame Mehamed and Debele Girma Bekele.