Afcon 2019: Preparing for Zimbabwe clash was difficult – DR Congo manager Ibenge

DR Congo boss Florent Ibenge opened up on challenges he faced while getting the team ready for their final group game against the Warriors on Sunday

Democratic Republic of Congo manager Florent Ibenge has revealed the issues his team faced before their Africa Cup of Nations game against Zimbabwe, which threatened to ruin their chances of success.

A Cedric Bakambu brace, as well as goals from Jonathan Bolingi and Britt Assombalonga resulted in a 4-0 hammering of Sunday Chidzambwa’s troops on Sunday evening.

Speaking to Goal, Ibenge shed light on how losses to Uganda and Egypt in their opening two fixtures complicated preparations for his side’s crucial encounter with the Warriors.

“I know my team’s capabilities but we were in a difficult position because we lost the two opening games which made it difficult to prepare for this game,” the DRC manager told Goal.

“When you know before playing that you’re nearly out of the competition it is really difficult.  

“Yesterday, I told my players to be professional till the end and they played good football today and took their chances.”

The East Africans face an anxious wait over the next 48 hours to confirm whether they’ll participate in the Round of 16 as one of the four best third-placed sides, or will be heading home.

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Ibenge preferred to remain optimistic when asked about his team’s chances of progressing to the knockout round.

“We just have to wait and not say anything else," he added.

"We have two days, waiting, and we have to work during these two days as we can’t do anything else.”