Zimbabwe will have to pull out all the stops and grab a win as they face Mali in their second 2015 CAF African Championships Group D match on Saturday in Rwanda.
The Warriors are fresh from a 1-0 defeat at the hands of Zambia in their opening tie on Tuesday and going to the Eagles of Mali means they will have to up their game.
Calisto Pasuwa’s side is the only team in the group with zero points as Mali and Uganda have one each while Zambia have a win, this means a bit of pressure for the Southern African side.
However, Zimbabwean striker Knox Mutizwa believes they can beat the West Africans and maximise their chances of reaching the next stage.
“It is unfortunate that we lost but we now have to quickly put that behind us and focus on the match against Mali,” said Mutizwa.
“After our match, we watched Uganda playing Mali and we saw that they’re physical and quick but I think we can handle them.
“I think we are faster than the Malians and we pass better. What is important is how we carry ourselves in the next game
“We have to show character and rise again, I believe in this team and I think we can win against Mali.”
On the other hand, Malian coach Djibril Drame said Zimbabwe will be a different side and welcomed the point against the Cranes.
Drame will be inspired by the fact that his charges netted two and will hope to see the same performance from his side.
“The first game is always important and to have a point is better than nothing,” Dramé said,
“Our next game is against Zimbabwe. They eliminated us at the quarters two years ago in South Africa but things are different now. It is not the same team, same players, same environment and same kind of preparation so it will be a different game.”
The clash is scheduled for Saturday at Stade Umuganda in Gisenyi at 13:00.