The Stade Regional de Nyamirambo, Kigali will host the first of back to back games between rivals Rwanda and Uganda in the Fifa World Cup qualifiers 2022.
Uganda are looking to maintain their dominance over the Amavubi and their bragging rights.
Rwanda will look to end a 14-year wait for a win against the Uganda Cranes with their latest victory coming in the CECAFA Senior Challenge in 2007.
Without further ado, let’s take a look at three key battles which could decide the encounter in Kigali.
#3 Abdul Rwatubyaye (Rwanda) Vs Yunus Sentamu (Uganda)
Rwatubyaye has been tremendous at the heart of Rwanda’s defence and is probably one of the reasons the Amavubi have conceded just two goals.
However, he comes up against on form Yunus Sentamu who could be trusted to lead the line in the absence of skipper Emmanuel Okwi and Derrick Nsibambi.
Micho has been at the receiving end of attacks from fans for not giving Sentamu playing time and this could be the time he hands him the mantle alongside either of Cromwell Rwothomio or Fahad Bayo.
He is a menace with his hold up play, movement and poaching skills and is a player Rwanda will need to keep their eye on.
#2 Jacques Tuyisenge (Rwanda) Vs Timothy Awany (Uganda)
Despite a dry run in recent games, Tuyisenge is expected to once again be the center of the Rwanda attacks and trusted with poaching goals for Mashami.
The APR forward will look to exploit any space while holding up the ball and bringing the midfielders into the attack. His direct challenge in the game is likely to be Timothy Awany.
The Ugandan defender missed the previous two games through COVID19 travel restrictions but in the absence of Murushid Jjuuko, he will be the main man in Micho’s backline.
This battle could decide the outcome of the game.
#1 Haruna Niyonzima (Rwanda) Vs Khalid Aucho (Uganda)
Niyonzima has been immense for the Amavubi since his debut more than a decade ago.
His experience in midfield and ball circulation always gets his side on the front foot and is the team’s main source of creativity.
However, against Uganda, he will come up against Aucho who has been the Cranes main player in the defensive midfield role for many years now. Aucho will be the man responsible for tracking his runs and disrupting his impact in Uganda’s half. This promises to be an interesting contest and whoever succeeds could turn the game in their favour.