Warriors battle Leopards for top spot in Kinshasa

Warriors battle Leopards for top spot in Kinshasa
Knox Mutizwa of Zimbabwe

by Bertin Basson

Friday Oct 12, 2018. 18:00

Democratic Republic of Congo and Zimbabwe will do battle for top spot in their 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying group at the Stade des Martyrs in Kinshasa on Saturday evening.

Kick-off is at 19h30 CAT (SA, GMT+2).

The two teams are currently locked on four points apiece following two rounds of fixtures in Group G, with Congo joining them on that points tally following their 3-1 win over Liberia on Thursday.

DR Congo beat their neighbours 3-1 last year thanks in large to a brace from Cedric Bakambu who makes a return to the Leopards fold for back-to-back games against the Warriors.

The China-based forward missed his country's 1-1 draw in Monrovia last month due to passport issues, but makes a return alongside Yannick Bolasie.

Also in the fold is West Ham United's wing-back Arthur Masuaku who is set to make his debut for the DR Congo this month after being summoned by head coach. Florent Ibenge, who has a raft of talent at his disposal.

Zimbabwe head into the clash on the back of a 1-1 draw away to the Congo in Brazzaville. A Knowledge Musona hat-trick spearheaded the Southern Africans to a 3-0 win over Liberia in their group opener.

Evans Rusike's injury will come as a blow for the Warriors, but with the likes of Kaizer Chiefs' in-form attacker Khama Billiat in their ranks, Zimbabwe will fancy their chances.

Zimbabwe, like their counterparts, have a new fullback to call on with England-born Tendayi Darikwa also set to make his international bow.

The two teams have met on four previous occasions, with both recording two wins apiece.

Zimbabwe will welcome DR Congo to the National Sports Stadium in Harare on Tuesday in the reverse fixture.

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