CHAN 2016: Rwanda defeat Ivory Coast 1-0 in tournament opener.

CHAN 2016: Rwanda and Coach McKinstry win the flagship opening match in front of 30,000 at the Amahoro, Kigali (16 Jan 2016).

[Rwanda vs Ivory Coast, CHAN - Group A, 16 Jan 2016 in Kigali, Rwanda.  Photo © Darren McKinstry 2016,]

Rwanda have defeated the Ivory Coast 1-0 in the CHAN 2016 tournament opener at a packed Amahoro stadium in Kigali.


Watched by President Paul Kagame, invited guests, and a crowd of 30,000, the Amavubi opened the game well, applying pressure and with a number of attempts on goal.


At 15 minutes, Ivorian defender Gbagnon Badie fouled Jean-Claude IRANZI (12) at the edge of the penalty area. Rwanda took advantage of the resulting free kick and moved ahead following a direct strike on goal from defender Emery BAYISENGE (8).


The Amavubi played controlling football for the remainder of the half, seeing a 1-0 score line at half time.

The Ivory Coast emerged for the second half knowing they would need to apply considerable pressure to overturn the score line.

[Rwanda vs Ivory Coast, CHAN - Group A, 16 Jan 2016 in Kigali, Rwanda.  Photo © Darren McKinstry 2016,]


Rwanda were however awarded a penalty at the 1 hour mark when captain Jacques TUYISENGE (9) was brought down by the Ivorian defence as he waited in the box to receive a corner.  

It was however not to be when Emery BAYISENGE's strike was saved by ‘Les Elephants’ goalkeeper Ali Badra Sangare.


Buoyed by the save, the Ivorian's applied increasing pressure, forcing the Amavubi defence to work. The best the Ivory Coast could manage however came at 89 minutes when a volley from Guiza Djedje hit the upright.


The win for the Amavubi placed them at the top of Group A with 3 points.


Rwanda now face on Gabon on Wednesday 20th January in the second fixture of Group A at the Amahoro Stadium, Kigali.


'Man of the Match'

Amavubi Defender Emery BAYISENGE (8) was voted Man of the Match.



Rwanda Team


Yannick MUKUNZI (6)
Jacques TUYISENGE (9, Cpt)
Jean-Claude IRANZI(12)
Fitina OMBORENGA (13)
Celestin NDAYISHIMIYE (14)
Innocent HABYARIMANA (17)

Djihad BIZIMANA (4)
Rashid KALISA (7)
Dominique Savio NSHUTI (11)
Fuastin USENGIMANA (15)
Ernest SUGIRA (16)
Olivier KWIZERA (18)
Yussufu HABIMANA (19)
Fiston MUNEZERO (21)
Jean Claude NDORI (23)


Post Match Interview with Coach McKinstry

We hear from Coach McKinstry and goalscorer & 'Man of the Match' Emery Bayisenge on their opening CHAN 2016 win against Ivory Coast.



Match Highlights 

Photo Highlights

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Video Highlights

Match highlights (3:22) courtesy of CAF TV



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About Coach McKinstry

Coach McKinstry is a UEFA Pro Licensed Football Coach, with a number of successes across his 20+ year career to date.    He is currently Head Coach of the Gambia National Team and Head Coach of Gor Mahia FC in Kenya (2022-24) where he won two Kenya Premier League titles (2023-24, 2022-23), and the 2023-24 Kenya Charity Shield, returning the club to the top of Kenyan football.

As Head Coach of the Uganda National Team, (2019 - 2021) he led Uganda to win CECAFA 2019 and delivered a win from 2 in every 3 games, going undefeated in 8 in evey 10 games.  This represented the highest 'win' and 'undefeated' rate achieved by a Uganda National Team Coach in over 15 years.

He was Head Coach of the Rwanda National Football Team (2015-16). Within 17 months he led Rwanda to a number of highs - including their first ever appearance in the knockout stages of a major international tournament (Quarter-finals of CHAN, Jan 2016) and finished runner-up in CECAFA (Dec 2105), being named 'Coach of the Tournament' for his efforts. 

Across 2013-14, he was Head Coach of the Sierra Leone National Men's Football team. Within just over a year, he had led Sierra Leone to their highest ever FIFA World and African rankings - 7th in Africa and 50th in the World (August 2014). 

He has also been Head Coach of Saif Sporting Club, Bangladesh Premier League (2018-19); and FK Kauno Zalgiris, Lithuanian A-Lyga (2017-18).   

Coach McKinstry is a European (UEFA), American (NSCAA) and university qualified football coach and a member of Common Goal.

Quotes: What the media say

  • There is an almost missionary zeal to Johnny McKinstry's devotion to his job.

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    Daily Mirror
  • McKinstry led the team to their highest ever placing in the FIFA world rankings. They broke into the top 50, ahead of his native Northern Ireland.

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    Damien Edgar Backpage Football
  • Under his management, the team played attractive football, scored goals and racked up some important results.

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    Eoin O'Callaghan
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