….when they face Mukura as Rayon host Atraco
Mukura vs SC Kiyovu
Police vs Amagaju
Marines vs Etincelles
Electrogaz vs Musanze
APR vs AS Kigali
Atraco vs Rayon Sport
TODAY is Boxing Day. Many, including domestic football coaches, are getting rid of their white beards and Santa’s big red hats.
In both Scotland and England, Boxing Day is traditional for the Scottish and Premier League respectively, as well as the lower divisions and Rugby Football leagues, to hold a full program of football and Rugby matches on Boxing Day.
Traditionally matches on Boxing Day are played against local rivals. This was originally to avoid teams and their fans having to travel a long distance to an away game on the day after Christmas Day. It also makes the day an important one in the sporting calendar.
While the country’s oldest club Kiyovu travel to Southern Province giant killers Mukura determined to secure a win that will give them some festive cheers, APR and early season surprise package Etincelles, are also hoping to approach their games aware that nothing but victory will keep them in contention for the title this season.
The Kiyovu’s tie against Mukura possess a few hallmarks of a potential disappoint. Capt. Jean Ntagwabira’s side will be considered favourites to win this tie but it won’t be so much of a shock if they lost it.
Their opponents will be much more confident and will fancy their chances of making it two wins out of two against the traditional big opponents following a deserved 1-0 win over champions APR last weekend.
“We have had good preparations for this game. When you get three points against the champions (APR), you always fancy your chances of beating anyone in the next game.
“We beat APR after four successive loses that’s why it’s important that we keep our concentration as we seek to follow on that win with another good results,” said former Kiyovu coach Ali Bizimana, now in charge of Mukura
He added, “Kiyovu should expect a hostile reception at Huye (stadium).”
Kiyovu will have to put aside their administrative problems for a day and concentrate on the task at hand because not very many teams leave Huye ground very happy.
“We also need to get points whether playing at home or away, so we are going to Mukura to try and win,” Kiyovu coach Ntagwabira said.
After five rounds of matches, Kiyovu are on 7th position with six points and a record of two wins and three defeats including the last two games.
APR need to start winning
At Nyamirambo stadium, APR will be hoping to return to winning way after managing just a point from the last two games.
Erik Paske’s team, who lost to Mukura last weekend having drawn against Electrogaz in the previous outing, take on AS Kigali, who also lost their last game against Amagaju. Paske will be without suspended duo of Haruna Niyonzima and Didier Kapet.
The ten-time league champions are jointly placed on third position with rivals Rayon Sport with 10 points each. AS Kigali are placed on tenth position with four points.
In Gisenyi, it’s the derby as highflying Etincelles face-off their relegation battling rivals Marines at Umuganda stadium.
There is no love lost between these sides that come from the same town.
Marines have lost all their five league games, and they know they have a big battle to overcome against their newly promoted youthful rivals, who are looking to finish in the top four.
Electrogaz take on Musanze at Mumena stadium while Police face Amagaju at Kicukiro.
The big game
But the game of the weekend must the clash between title contenders Atraco and Rayon Sport tomorrow at Nyamirambo stadium.
Atraco, who were pipped by APR to last seasons’ league title, lead the standings with 13 points with a record of four wins and a draw, while their opponents are three points off the pace in fourth position.
The Blue’s coach Jean Baptista Kayiranga was hesitant to predict victory for his inconsistent team.
“Technically we are ready but the players seem not be prepared psychologically,” Kayiranga said, revealing that the players have gone two months without payment.
Team P W D L Pts
Atraco 5 4 1 0 13
Etincelles 5 4 1 0 13
APR 5 3 1 1 10
Rayon 5 3 1 1 10
Amagaju 5 2 1 2 7
Electrogaz 5 2 1 2 7
Kiyovu 5 2 0 3 6
Musanze 5 1 3 1 6
Police 5 1 2 2 5
AS Kigali 5 1 1 2 4
Mukura 5 1 0 4 3
Marines 5 0 0 5 0
Boxing Day Suspensions
Donatien Tuyizere Atraco
Mua Mutuyimana Marines
J. Baptista Mukamba Musanze
Haruna Niyonzima APR
Didier Kapet APR
J. d’Amour Harolimana Etincelles
Labama Bokota 3 goals APR
Clever Muhire 3 goals Etincelles
Roger Tchouassi 3 goals Police
Atraco 9 goals
Police 9 goals
APR 8 goals
Rayon Sport 8 goals
Amagaju 8 goals
Etincelles 3 goals
APR 3 goals
Musanze 3 goals