AMAVUBI HAVE a good chance to qualify for the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations but only if the team could have adequate preparations.
Stephen Constantine’s team is n Group A of the final qualifying round along with title-holders Nigeria and two former winners Sudan and South Africa, with the top two teams subsequently advancing to the January/February finals tournament in Morocco.
Rwanda’s group may not be the hardest, neither the easiest. At the minimum, Rwanda need to win all its home games and snatch a few away points, something that is not out of reach for the current squad which has shown, in the last five matches, that it has what it takes to win when they need to.
Under Constantine, who took up the job just over two months ago, Amavubi have played five and won four, a record that reflects a change of mentality among the players. It is a run that has instilled new belief in the team and fans alike.
Having watched the team make dramatic comebacks against Libya and Congo en route to the next qualifying round, it is important that the country fully gets behind the boys, and Constantine and the rest of the coaching staff for the upcoming fixtures.
We need to give them the maximum support before and during the matches, particularly at the Kigali Regional Stadium, which has become a fortress for the national team in recent years.
However, history tells us that there are no easy games in the qualifiers. Amavubi must be prepared to give their best in every game. They need to treat every game like it’s a cup final. The sports ministry, the football federation, and all the other stakeholders, too, need to pull in the same direction to ensure the team continues its impressive run.
Against their group opponents, the Amavubi will need to replicate the never-say-die mentality they have shown in the qualifiers thus far.
The current crop of players can write their names in history books by taking their country to its second Afcon finals.