By Peter Kamasa
Police FC coach Andre Cassa Mbungo has hailed his side after beating Atlabara football club in first leg of the preliminary qualifying round of the 2016 CAF Confederation Cup on Saturday at Kigali Regional Stadium. The game ended 3-1 in favour of Police.
The Peace Cup winners beat the South Sudan league champions, Atlabara FC thanks to goals from striker Dany Usengimana, defender Fabrice Twagizimana and striker Isaie Songa while Atlabara's away goal was scored by Khamis Leon Uso. Mbungo was specifically happy with his team's performance in the second half in which they scored two goals, and it could have been more.
"It was not a good first half because we made some mistakes, but I am thankful for my players who gave a much improved performance in the second half to score two goals," Mbungo said after the match.
The Former Sec Academy and AS Kigali coach admitted that, his team still has a lot to do in the second leg in the South Sudan capital Juba in two weeks' time.
"We have to be at our best in the second leg, we have to avoid the mistakes that we have made today. We have to be at our best physically, mentally in order to eliminate them," he explained.
Cassa Mbungo added that Atlabara scored an away goal, which could turn out to be vital in the second leg, adding "so for us it's not over yet, there is still a lot of work to do in two weeks' time. We will go there with the purpose of winning."
Meanwhile, the Police FC coach acknowledged that his team will struggle to find a suitable replacement for the inspirational skipper and forward, Jacques Tuyisenge, who signed for the Kenyan Premier League champions, Gor Mahia last month.
The Rwanda international was signed for a reported record US$ 40,000 transfer fee (about Rwf30 million), making him the most expensive Rwandan player ever involving a local club.
Leo Adraa, the head coach of Atlabara FC said he remains confident his team can score two goals in the second leg and eliminate Police, "I am sure we can score two goals to eliminate Police."
"We have seen how they (Police) play tactically and technically, I am sure we are capable of scoring two goals at home. Police is a strong team, but we will give our best in the second leg, I am very confident to win the game," stated the Ugandan tactician.
The winner over the two legs will face the winner between Ajax Cape Town of South Africa and GD Sagrada Esperanca of Angola in the first round.
Police FC 3 - 1 Atlabara
El Khartoum El Watani 0 - 1 SC Villa
Defence 1 - 3 Misr Makkassa
Lightstars FC 0 - 3 Bidvest Wits
Sagrada Esperanca 1 - 2 Ajax Cape Town
Vita Club Mokanda 0 - 1 Akwa United
Fomboni de Moheli 1 - 0 Atletico Olympic
Harare City 3 - 2 AS Adema
Source: ALL AFRICA