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Africa Cup of Nations

Migne: Matasi will start for Harambee Stars in the Afcon despite mistakes

08:24 BST 16/06/2019
Patrick Matasi of Harambee Stars and Aboud Omar.
The French coach defends his keeper after a howler allowed DR Congo to force a 1-1 draw against Kenya in a friendly on Saturday

Sebastien Migne has maintained that goalkeeper Patrick Matasi will have the chance to rectify his mistakes at the Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon).

The Saint. George custodian was at fault on Saturday after he turned from hero to villain – having saved a penalty from Cedric Bakambu early in the game. Then his blunder gifted West Ham United defender Arthur Masuaku an easy goal from a weak free-kick.

Against Ghana’s Black Stars during the qualifiers, the former Tusker custodian was also at fault as he allowed another weak strike to slip past his hands, as Kenya went on to lose by a solitary goal to finish second in Group F.

Despite the costly mistakes, coach Migne has hinted that he will stick with his keeper for the Afcon tournament that kicks off on June 21 in Egypt.

“Sometimes you play as you train or as you are in your life, he (Matasi) was not really there against DR Congo,” Migne told reporters after the friendly.

“He (Matasi) had twisted his ankle during the warm-up and when you commit a mistake you can improve a lot, and I hope he will improve for the future and at Afcon of course.”

On the friendly, Migne said he was impressed with his players despite the late goal that denied them a second straight win since they arrived in France for preparations.

“It was interesting today (Saturday), but when you play a strong team you forget the game is finished and it is not finished and at the end, they can win if [even] it is two minutes more.

“We forgot how to play in the last few minutes and suddenly we conceded the goal and you know what happened on the goal, but if you forget one detail sometimes and if you don’t respect your football, the opponent will kill you and you will receive the punishment,” Migne continued.

“We have to be positive, the players gave me a good response, my players are amassing and honestly speaking, they have shown some tremendous improvement.”

Kenya won their last game against Madagascar by a solitary goal, scored by captain Victor Wanyama through a penalty.

For DR Congo, this was a second consecutive draw following their barren result against Burkina Faso in their initial friendly game.

Kenya will now prepare to head for Egypt on Tuesday, ahead of the biannual tournament set to kick off on June 21 in Egypt.

Harambee Stars are in Group C alongside AlgeriaSenegal and Tanzania while DR Congo are in a tough group with hosts Egypt, Uganda and Zimbabwe.

Kenya will face Algeria in their opener on June 23.