Ethiopia entertains Botswana for a big home victory


For the first time since the end of the 29th African nation’s cup final saga, the Ethiopian National side, the “Waliyas” face visitors Botswana today at the Addis Ababa Stadium for the 14th Brazil World Cup final group qualification third round fixture. The National team is heavily favored to win, and win big. .
Head coach Sewnet Bishaw and his squad are expected to maintain their lead in group one that brought together South Africa, Central Africa and Botswana together. Even though the Waliyas stayed in camp only for five days, it is believed that they are in good form and morale. Many members of the squad, nine from Dedebit and eight from St. George to be exact, are back from international club fixtures. “Though we were under a time constraint, because 17 out of the 22 players had been in action at international level, we will be able to manage.” Sewnet notified reporters. A win over Botswana today will mean Ethiopia remains at pole position in the group’s qualification campaign, staying on top of the group table, with seven points.
A second leg home match against South Africa and away matches against the modest teams of Botswana and Central Africa is all that remains to reach the final qualification stage that will bring together the winners of the ten groups for a two-leg playoff, which appears a likely scenario for the Waliyas, if they can make it count today.
With Dedebit’s goalie Sisay Bancha suspended for two matches, Sewnet has called upon the services of Harar Brewery’s Samson Assefa, who will be in the reserves. Thus, with Ethiopian Coffee’s Jemal Tassew between the wood works, and a back four likely from St. George, (Alula Girma, Degu Debebe, Biyadgelegn Elias and Abebaw Butako, Sewnet appears ready to have a go at it. Those expected to play in midfield positions are Addis Hentsa and Adane Girma from Dedebit, and Shimeles Bekele and Adane Girma from St. George. The player currently based in Belgium, Salhadin Said, and Dedebit’s Getaneh Kebede, are anticipated to lead the strike force, which needs not only a win, but to produce a convincingly big home win. Ethiopia tops the group, collecting four points from two matches, while Central Africa is second with three, South Africa third with two and Botswana at the bottom of the group with a single point.