Masudi hails AS Kigali players after Gicumbi upset

Djuma Masudi disagrees with a referee’s decision during a past league match at Kigali Stadium. The Burundi-born tactician was appointed as AS Kigali head coach in October. File


APR            1-0   Kiyovu

Muhanga   1-1   Bugesera


AS Kigali    6-0   Gicumbi

Etincelles   3-0   Musanze

AS Kigali coach Djuma Masudi has heaped praise on his players after romping to an emphatic 6-0 victory over Gicumbi to jump to 7th position in Azam Rwanda Premier League.

Center-back Omar Ngandu, Ally Niyonzima, Jean Claude Ndarusanze, Jimmy Mashangegwa with a brace were all on target before Farouk Ssentongo completed the rout at Kigali Stadium.

This was the biggest victory by any side in the 2018-19 season.

The City of Kigali-backed side shrugged off lacklustre start – losing three and drawing four of their first seven league games – with a convincing display.

The hosts went ahead after 21 minutes courtesy of a strong strike from center-back Ngandu, which was followed by his elder brother Niyonzima’s goal to double the lead just after six minutes.

Burundi-born striker Ndarusanze ensured he was on the score-sheet in the 31st minute with a stunning piece of skill for his third goal this term.

It was 3-0 at the break, but Masudi’s men were far from done.

“My players were fantastic today, and in the last three games. Considering the way we started the season and how we are recovering, I am confident we will do much better with time,” he noted.

Returning for the second-half, it took Kibengo just 46 seconds to net AS Kigali’s fourth goal and his first on the night after rounding off Gicumbi defenders in a solo effort. The forward scored his second goal in the 72nd minute before Ssentongo made it 6-0 with one minute to time.

Now, according to Masudi, the attention is shifted to preparing for their next match against defending champions APR, at Kigali Stadium on Sunday.

“It is going to be a tough game (against APR) on Sunday, but we are AS Kigali – we don’t fear anyone. The confidence level in the team is high and players are mentally fit now, we will be fighting for the three points,” Masudi added.

Masudi, a former Rayon Sports player and coach, was appointed AS Kigali’s head coach in October, replacing Eric Nshimiyimana from the position he had held since 2014.