Rwanda take on Ethiopia in decisive clash for CHAN ticket

Amavubi skipper Haruna Niyonzima (#8) is expected to start on Saturday after missing the first-leg last month, in which Rwanda beat Ethiopia 1-0 in Ethiopia. File.

Saturday

Rwanda Vs Ethiopia [Aggr. 1-0]

AMAVUBI will be looking to make the best of home advantage when they face Ethiopia on Saturday in their clash for a ticket to the 6th African Nations Championships (CHAN) next year.

Rwanda go into the match as overwhelming favourites following last month’s 1-0 away win in the first leg.

Kick-off 3:30pm.

“It’s a do or die affair,” Amavubi head coach Vincent Mashami said during an interview with Saturday Sport on Friday. “We must show that we are a hungry team, and go into the game determined to leave everything on the pitch.

After missing Rwanda’s last three competitive matches due to conflicting information in his identification papers, skipper Haruna Niyonzima has been cleared to feature for the national team and he is expected to start in the return leg against Ethiopia.

“Winning in Ethiopia is not a guarantee of qualification. They could also win here, so we can’t afford any mistakes or dare to lose focus,” Mashami further warned his players.

APR striker Ernest Sugira scored what he now regards as 'the best goal of my career' last month as Amavubi beat Ethiopia at Mekelle Stadium to close in on a ticket to the CHAN 2020. A draw will be enough to secure Mashami’s men a spot in the tournament.

However, Ethiopia coach Abraham Mebratu has insisted that a lot is still at play in the remaining 90 minutes of the tie, hence he and his players have not ruled out completely the possibility of their team’s qualification.

"We lost the first leg at home but we have high hopes in the remaining 90 minutes. We can still make an impact. We had two key players who missed the first leg, but they are available now. So it is going to be a different game.”

“We will do our best and see how it goes."

editor@newtimesrwanda.com

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