13 May 2018 06:46
Congo scored in stoppage time to snatch a 1-1 draw away to Botswana on Saturday in Gaborone.
Jean Louamba headed home at the death to deny Botswana a vital win thanks to Thabang Khuduga’s first half opener.
Before kick-off, connoisseurs expected Botswana to have an easy go following the late arrival of the Congolese, who jetted in on the eve of the game. However, the visitors showed none of it as they controlled the game.
Botswana absorbed the pressure in the earlier phases of the game and didn't have much to do defensively because the Congolese kept possession in their own half and in the middle most of the time.
In the 17th minute, Congo initiated an attack that was easily dealt with by Botswana goalkeeper Lesang Senne who quickly released the ball to Baokeditse Talane who was close to the centre line. Talane quickly released a through ball to Khuduga who didn't waste time and gave Botswana the lead.
Khuduga is responsible for scoring all the two goals that Botswana scored so far in the qualifiers. He scored the goal against Namibia in the previous round, that saw them progressing.
The visitors then resorted to keeping possession while Botswana was happy to sit back. Their good chance came just before half time when Louamba's shot was saved by Senne.
Three minutes after the break Botswana won a free kick just outside the box and Talane delivered a troubling grass-cutter that forced a finger tips save by Perrauld Ndinga-Tsatou.
In the 58th minute, Louamba tried his luck from outside the box and his shot went wide. The tempo of the game went down but Congo maintained their dominance.
With ten minutes remaining, the Congolese piled a lot of pressure on the homers backline with consistent crosses. Borel Tomadzoto missed a sitter heading wide on 85 minutes from close range.
Their persistence and pressure paid off in the 90th minute when substitute Pregana Mouniengue delivered a cross from the right wing that Louamba headed home to silence the home crowd.
Dragojlo Stanojlovic (Head Coach, Botswana)
I’m not happy. We played well for 88 minutes. We were tactically good, but in the 90th minute we made a mistake and they scored. Congo is a good team and I respect them. My boys played a good game. We will be looking for a win in Congo.
Thabang Khuduga (Forward, Botswana)
What we did with that goal is what we always do at training. I feel proud, we fought as a team. Unfortunately, we conceded in the last minute. My intention is to score in every game. We won't be going to Congo under pressure. I believe we are going to get the better of the Congolese.
Friday, 11 May 2018
Algeria 0-0 Ghana
Saturday, 12 May 2018
Mauritania 1-0 Guinea
Guinea Bissau 2-2 Nigeria
Burkina Faso 3-1 Libya
Gabon 3-0 Cote d’Ivoire
Rwanda 0-2 Zambia
Burundi 1-1 Sudan
Uganda 1-0 Cameroon
Mozambique 1-1 South Africa
Malawi 1-2 Angola
Botswana 1-1 Congo
Senegal 0-0 Egypt
Sunday, 13 May 2018
Gambia vs Benin
Tanzania vs Mali
Picture: Resaobaka Thatanyane of Botswana battling for the ball with Mick Itali Osette.