Thursday, May 31, 2007
Eritrea's Shimungus & Angola's Flavio meet again in Asmara.
Yes! Angola scored 6 goals to Eritrea's one during the first round game between the two nations in March at Luanda. The Red Sea boys were in the game for the most part until the 30 minutes mark when they started to show signs of weakness. May be something was on the minds of some members of the team at that time.
This weekend when the Angolans head to Asmara, Eritrea they will have to think twice even though they are the favorites. Eritrea's record on home turf is not too bad. They have tied teams like Cameroon and Nigeria in the past along with upsets against Mozambique.
Angola may have a star in Flavio who makes his living playing in the Egyptian first division but Eritrea has a hard working young veteran player in Yidnekatchew Shimangus. This game is very important for Eritrea while Angola can still advance by winning the division that they are leading comfortably. Kenya will be taking on Swaziland in the other group game. Eritrea has beaten Kenya in Nairobi and tied Swaziland. So what now for Eritrea?
By beating Angola, Eritrea's RedSea boyz can exceed their chances at advancing comfortably as a second place team if they beat both Kenya and Swaziland in their next two games. There are many positive things going for the Eritrean team, like playing in a newly refurbished turf stadium at Chichero, playing in front of the home crowd, and adding players that were not a part of the team that lost in Luanda.
For the past few years looking at the Eritrean national team, there has been one player that has left his mark and has been consistent throughout the ups and downs . He plays smart and is physically fit to go through many great defenders. Add to his experience and I think come this weekend he will be the difference against Angola.
Yidnekatchew Shimungus has been nothing but spectacular and with a few players to help him out Eritrea's chances at home will be better than before. Flavio may be abig star and Angola might have been a world cup contender that beat Eritrea convincingly, but I believe if Eritrea gets its act together and plays with confidence, The Red Sea boyz might just get that sweet victory they so deserve in the land of Yikealos. Last week the Eritrean national team beat a strong Sudanese team by the score 1-0 and then tied them again 1-1. This shows that they can play back to back games without any problem. Both games can also be an advantage since they can serve as a pre-match warm up that the Eritrean national teams must continue to engage in in the future.
Good luck and hope to hear a great result.