Amagaju FC 0-0 APR FC
APR FC head coach Jimmy Mulisa was left a frustrated and a disappointed man after his team were held to a goalless draw by ten-man Amagaju FC on Thursday at Nyagisenyi Stadium in Nyamagabe district.
For Mulisa, it was a case of two points lost than one gained in a season where the military side are chasing a record-extending 17th league title, but have odds stuck against them in the face of stiff competition, especially from the defending champions Rayon Sports.
APR went into the match-day 9 fixture against a side in relegation zone, well aware that victory would take them to the summit of the table but with the draw, they stayed in third place with 16 points, a point behind AS Kigali and SC Kiyovu.
Mulisa’s team dominated the game and wasted several goal scoring opportunities; with Innocent Nshuti, Djihad Bizimana, Issa Bigirimana and Muhadjir Hakizimana all coming short against Amagaju goalkeeper Pacifique Twagizimana.
“We needed to win this game to go on top, we have wasted several chances but we will keep working hard because the league is still open. APR must be winning such matches to stay in the title race, the players know what we expect from them, today they tried but we just failed to score,” Mulisa said after the match.
The former APR forward admitted, “So I am disappointed that we have dropped two points here today, I didn’t expect the game to end this way (draw) because I prepared the team very well, we dominated and created very good chances, but it is a lesson as we plan for the next game.”
Both teams displayed an attacking game in the first half as it was clear that all sides were looking for a win from the onset. But despite the attacking play, both sides failed to find the back of each other’s net.
Amagaju had chances to score goals through Shaban ‘Tshabalala’ Hussein, Amani Mugisho Mukeshe and Yumba Kaite but their attempts were saved by goalkeeper Steven Ntalibi.
Pablo Nduwimana’s team, who came into the match four days after losing at home 1-0 against Rayon Sports, have gone nine seasons without beating the army side in the league.
“APR is a lucky team because we created many chances but their goalkeeper did great job today. We wanted to win the game; you could see that from the first whistle,” Nduwimana said.
He noted that, “Overall, we’re happy with the point but I am particularly not happy that we finished the match with ten players.”
The hosts were reduced down to ten players in the 80th when Innocent Ndizeye was sent off after receiving second yellow card in the match, while APR goalkeeper coach Ibrahim Mugisha was also sent in stands.
Amagaju are 14th with 8 points same as 13th-placed Musanze FC and one point ahead of Miroplast and Espoir, are both seven points.
APR’s next league fixture will against Musanze FC on Sunday at Kigali Stadium while Amagaju travel to Gicumbi FC on the same day.