Neeskens Kebano of DR Congo battles for the ball with Ortega Dakonam Djene of Togo (l) and Lalawele Atakora of Togo (r) during the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations Finals football match between Togo and DR Congo at the Port Gentil Stadium in Gabon on 24 January 2017 ©Chris Ricco/BackpagePix
Saturday Jul 15, 2017. 20:48
Togo are out to start their 2018 CAF African Championships qualifying campaign on a high note when they meet Benin on Sunday.
The Sparrow Hawks are out to ensure they return to winning ways at home to book a spot in Kenya next year.
Coach Claude Leroy is aware that a win is important for his charges to erase their loss at the hands of Algeria during their 2019 CAF Africa Cup of Nations qualifier last month.
Prior to that loss, they were beaten 2-0 by Comoros in an international friendly in June and are under pressure to claim a win.
Looking at the visitors, Benin will hope to continue winning their matches but heading to Lome means they will have to box smart.
Fresh from a win over Gambia in the AFCON Qualifiers in June and a 1-1 draw against Cote d'Ivoire in May, means they will be confident going into this clash.
Coach Oumar Tchomogo has a task to select the best players for the mission as they want to make their mark in Kenya come 2018.
As both sides will battle it out for the first time in a competitive encounter, both teams will want to head to the second leg with a win.
This encounter will be staged at 17:00 (CAT) at the Stade de Kégué in Lomé and the return leg will take place a week later on July 23 in Cotonou.