Mozambique and Rwanda face off at the FNB Stadium on Thursday as both sides seek to begin their Africa Cup of Nations qualifying campaign on a high note.
The teams have been drawn in Group L of the qualifiers where they will do battle with Benin and AFCON defending champions Senegal.
Mozambique were narrowly beaten 1-0 by the Sihlangu Semnikati of Eswatini in last Tuesday’s meeting at Campo da ABB.
The game was decided just past the hour mark as Khethokuhle Mkhontfo opened the scoring with a lovely finish to sink Chiquinho Conde’s men.
As a result, Os Mambas have now failed to win any of their three outings since the turn of the year which is surely a cause for concern.
Next up for them is the challenge of an opposing side who have proven to be a tough nut to crack with the previous four meetings yielding two wins apiece for either side.
The most recent of those encounters came back in March 2021 as Thursday’s hosts fell to a 1-0 AFCON qualifying defeat against the visitors, although that proved to be inconsequential as both teams eventually failed to reach the tournament proper.
Rwanda are yet to feature on the international stage since a 2-0 defeat against the National Elephants of Guinea back in January.
First-half goals from Mohamed Bayo and Naby Keita put Haruna Niyonzima’s men to the sword at the Amahoro Stadium.
The Amavubi have now lost all but one of their last six matches and will be looking to arrest this slump in form as soon as possible.
That run includes three straight away defeats against Kenya, Uganda and Mali, leaving Thursday’s visitors with another uphill task on the road in this one.
Mozambique form (all competitions):
We say: Mozambique 1-0 Rwanda
Both teams have found goals hard to come by of late, so we expect a low-scoring affair. That said, we are also backing Mozambique to come out on top by the odd goal come the sound of the final whistle.