It may be Super Bowl Week-end in the United States, but there is something much bigger taking place this week-end within all African Communities all across the Globe. Yes, bigger than Super Bowl; it's the 2015 African Cup of Nations Quarter Finals. And today, we are set for a treat: it's the Clash of Congos.
The Congo-Brazzaville "Diables Rouge" (red devils) will be affronting their neighbor the DR Congo-Kinshasa "Leopards" on the first game of the 2015 Cup of Nations, at the Estadio de Bata stadium in Equatorial Guinea. Kick-Off is set for 16:00 GMT.
This will be the first time in 41 years these two teams (emerging from the two closest capitals in the World: Kinshasa and Brazzaville) will be affront each other. The last time they met, Congo beat DR Congo (then Zaire) 2 to 1 in Egypt. Talking about settling old family business; we are in for a feast.
There will be house-divided throughout both capitals, which have countless of blended families originating from both sides - not to mention political struggles and weakening bonds between the two countries.
DR Congo made it to the Quarter finals with three draws and have a lot to prove to their opponent, who finished on top of their group with two wins and a draw.
DID YOU KNOW: The current Congo coach, French Claude Leroy actually coached the DR Congo team twice prior to his involvement with Congo Diables Rouge?
The rivalry between these two countries are reflected not only in sports, but in almost everything: Fashion & Style, Music, and much more. Although the two sides shares lots of commonalities, the segregation is well defined and easily identifiable. And today, it will be felt all across African communities in the world.
There will be trash talks all over Facebook, Twitter, and all forms of Social medias. There will be rumors of broken families and broken friendship ties. But rest assured, this will not be a feud to worry about; this is how Congoleses co-exist. Congoleses are passionate people, but mostly caring people. At the end of the day, both sides will have a sense of pride of being somewhat represented in the next round of the completion, because there will be a winner, and there will be a loser. One Congo will move forward. We wish both sides good luck and good fight.
MATCH FACTS (Source: BBC)
- This will be only the second time Congo Brazzaville have featured in an Afcon quarter-final after losing 2-1 to Ghana in Senegal 23 years ago
- DR Congo have reached the Afcon quarter-finals five times and their lone success came 17 years ago when they shocked Cameroon 1-0 in Burkina Faso
- Group B runners-up DR Congo this week became only the third country after Guinea (2015) and Mali (1972) to reach the knockout stage without winning
- any of their three group games
- The African neighbours have met three times in Afcon DR Congo winning 3-0 in 1968 and 2-0 in 1972 before Congo turned the tables in 1974 with a 2-1 victory
- Fifa rankings suggest a close encounter with DR Congo (13-57) just two places ahead of Congo (15-61) in Africa and four ahead in the world.
|01 Mafoumbi||01 Muteba|
|18 Baudry||02 Issama Mpeko|
|21 Babélé||14 Zakuani|
|04 Moubhibo||17 Mongongu|
|06 Bissiki||03 Kasusula|
|08 N'Dinga||18 Cedrick|
|07 Oniangué||22 Mbemba Mangulu|
|05 Bouka Moutou||06 Makiadi|
|12 Litsingi||11 Bolasie|
|13 Bifouma Koulossa||19 Bokila|
|10 Dore||09 Mbokani Bezua|
|Congo Substitutes||Congo DR Substitutes|
|02 N'Ganga||04 Oualembo|
|03 N'Ganga||05 Munganga|
|09 M'boussy||07 Mulumbu|
|11 Ondama||08 Kage|
|14 Gandzé||10 Kebano|
|15 Douniama||12 Mabele|
|16 Massa||13 Kabananga|
|17 Malonga||15 Kimwaki|
|19 Malonga||16 Kudimbana|
|20 Binguila||20 Mabidi|
|22 Ndzila||21 Mubele|
|23 Mavoungou||23 Mandanda|