Amavubi start intensive preps for CAR clash

Justin Mico (middle) is so far the only foreign-based player in Amavubi camp. The striker plies his trade with Kenyan side Sofapaka. Sam Ngendahimana.

November 18

Rwanda Vs CAR

Amavubi entered residential camp at Credo Hotel in Huye District on Friday ahead of the upcoming AFCON 2019 Group ‘H’ qualifier against Central African Republic (CAR) on November 18.

The game will be staged at Huye Stadium, the facility’s first international match since January 2016 when it hosted the 4th African Nations Championship (CHAN) finals tournament.

The team, without foreign-players, reported to camp on Friday morning and were supposed to hold a light training session in the afternoon before starting intensive training on Saturday at Huye Stadium.

“When you are preparing for such games, you need to be ready in every aspect. We have traveled to Huye for final preparations so that players can get familiar with the pitch and environment well ahead of time,” Amavubi head coach Mashami said on Friday.

Rwanda will be hoping to secure their first group win after registering one draw and three defeats in the first four games. CAR beat Amavubi 2-1 in the two sides’ first-leg clash in June last year.

He added: “We selected young players who we are confident are capable of delivering what we are trying to accomplish, now and long-term. CAR is a must-win, at least for the honour of the country after failing in the last four matches.”

By press time, Friday, only Kenya-based striker Justin Mico had joined the camp while the rest were due to join their teammates on Sunday.

The awaited players include; Meddie Kagere (Simba, Tanzania), Jacques Tuyisenge (Gor Mahia, Kenya), Danny Usengimana (Terrasan, Egypt), Djihad Bizimana (Waasland-Beveren, Belgium), Steve Rubanguka (Patromaasmeshelen, Belgium) and Tresor Shema (Torhout 1992km FC, Belgium). It is the maiden call-ups for Rubanguka and Shema.

After four matches, Rwanda is bottom of Group H with one point, three adrift of third-placed CAR. Favourites Guinea and Ivory Coast rank first and second with 10 and 7 points, respectively.