DR Congo friendly will raise our automatism – Amavubi coach

Jean Claude Iranzi (L), seen here against DR Congo in a past match, was a key member of the Amavubi squad during the 2016 CHAN finals tournament staged in Rwanda. File.

Friendly match

September 18

DR Congo Vs Rwanda

2020 CHAN Qualifier

September 22

Ethiopia Vs Rwanda

AMAVUBI coach Vincent Mashami has said that the upcoming warm-up game against DR Congo will be a good test for his side ahead of the tie against Ethiopia in the final round of the 6th African Nations Championships (CHAN) qualifiers.

Rwanda Football Association (Ferwafa) confirmed on Friday that Amavubi – comprising only home-based players – will play DR Congo in a friendly match on September 18, at the Stade de Martyrs in Kinshasa, four days before taking on Ethiopia.

Ethiopia will host the first-leg on September 22, with the decisive clash scheduled for October 19 at Kigali Stadium.

The friendly match, only the fourth meeting between Rwanda and DR Congo in 15 years, will be Amavubi’s last warm-up before the team flies to Addis on September 19. Rwanda leads the head-to-head record 2-1.

Speaking to Saturday Sport, Mashami admitted that putting a team together is a challenge, but the DR Congo friendly game will come in handy.

“The friendly game is important for both sides. It will be a good test for my players, but a lot of work is to be invested in training,” Mashami said.

“The game will improve players and put them in competitive mood before facing Ethiopia.”

In 2017, Rwanda qualified for the 5th CHAN finals – held last year in Morocco – after edging Ethiopia 3-2

While Rwanda gears up for the double-header against Ethiopia for a ticket to the CHAN 2020, DR Congo will be up against the Central African Republic on a similar mission.

DR Congo beat Rwanda 2-1 the last time the two sides met, in the 2016 CHAN tournament’s quarter-finals at Amahoro Stadium.

Established in 2009 and designed exclusively for players who feature in their domestic leagues, the 6th edition of the biennial continental tournament will be held in Cameroun next year.