Gabon chasing first win over Mali in World Cup qualifiers

Gabon chasing first win over Mali in World Cup qualifiers
Molla Wague of Mali challenged by Luwaga Kizoto of Uganda during the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations Finals match between Uganda and Mali at the Oyem Stadium in Gabon on 25 January 2017 ©Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

by Phumzile Ngcatshe

Saturday Nov 11, 2017. 13:00

Gabon host Mali in their final 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifier on Saturday as they want a win to wrap up their campaign on a high.

The Panthers have had a poor campaign as they have failed to qualify for the biggest tournament on the global stage.

Having hosted the 2017 CAF African Cup of Nations, they were hopeful of reaching Russia next year, but have only bagged one win against Cote d'Ivoire.

Jorge Costa's men have lost two and drew as many games as they now sit at number three in Group C with five points.

They will want to beat the Les Aigles and finish with eight points after six matches.

Looking at the visitors, Mali are also hoping to bag a win and ensure they redeem their status as one of the top football sides on the continent.

Coach Yacouba Sylla will motivate his troops to ensure they stun their hosts in Libreville and finish their campaign with five points.

Mali are yet to taste victory in the African zone qualifying campaign as they drew three times and lost twice to the Elephants and Morocco.

Sitting at the bottom of the standings is not a good feat for the West Africans and that will push them to fight harder for a win come Saturday.

The encounter will be staged at the Stade de Franceville on Saturday. Kick-off is at 16:30 (CAT).

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