Sports Mole previews Sunday’s World Cup Qualifying – Africa clash between Sudan and Congo DR, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
The action continues in Group of the 2026 World Cup when Sudan and Congo DR go head to head at the Martyrs of February Stadium on Sunday.
Both sides head into the weekend off the back of contrasting opening-day results, with Les Leopards claiming a comfortable victory over Mauritania on home soil.
Sudan were denied a dream start to their quest for a World Cup ticket as they were held to a 1-1 draw by Togo at the Martyrs of February Stadium on Thursday.
Milton Keynes Dons striker Mohamed Eisa converted his 17th-minute penalty to put the hosts in front but Kevin Denkey pulled one back on the stroke of half time to force a share of the spoils.
Prior to that, Sudan were on a three-game losing streak across all competitions, including successive defeats against Mauritania and Congo DR in the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers.
This poor run of results saw Sudan’s dreams of a first AFCON appearance since 1973 come to a disappointing end as they finished rooted to the bottom of Group I with just six points from a possible 18.
However, Thursday’s draw means the Secretarybirds have now gone unbeaten in four of their last five home games — claiming two wins and two draws — with a 3-0 defeat against Mauritania on June 20 being the exception.
While James Kwesi Appiah’s men will look to get up and running in the qualifiers this weekend, they go up against an opposing side who have won six of their last eight encounters since March 1967.
Congo DR, on the other hand, could not have hoped for a better start to the World Cup qualifiers as they picked up a 2-0 victory over Mauritania at the Stade des Martyrs last Thursday.
Following a goalless first half, Brentford striker Yoane Wissa broke the deadlock in the 62nd minute to set the hosts on their way before Theo Bongonda made sure of all three points with an 81st-minute strike.
This was in keeping with their impressive run in the AFCON qualifiers where they picked up four wins in their six matches to finish top of Group I with a two-point cushion over second-placed Mauritania.
Les Leopards have now won each of their last five competitive matches, scoring 12 goals and keeping four clean sheets since a 3-0 defeat at the hands of Senegal in the Africa Nations Championship back in January.
Congo DR, who are currently 65th in the latest FIFA World Rankings, have featured in the World Cup just once, which came in 1974, when they lost each of their three matches to crash out in the group stages.
Sebastien Desabre’s men came close to booking their spot in Qatar last year, but after topping Group J of the qualifiers with 11 points, they fell to a 5-2 aggregate loss against Morocco in the playoffs.
Sudan World Cup Qualifying – Africa form:
Sudan form (all competitions):
Congo DR World Cup Qualifying – Africa form:
Congo DR form (all competitions):
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Ramadan Agab was forced off injured shortly after the half-hour mark against Togo on Thursday and the 34-year-old is a major doubt for this weekend’s clash.
Eisa had a debut to remember in the aforementioned game and the 29-year-old forward should lead the Sudan attack once again, alongside Pharco FC man Saif Thierry.
At the defensive end of the pitch, we expect an unchanged back four of Bakhit Khamis, Mohamed Saeed, Mustafa Karshoum and skipper Ramadan Agab, with Mohamed Mustafa starting between the sticks.
With his strike against Mauritania, Wissa now has three goals in 15 appearances since his debut in October 2020 and the Brentford striker will be looking to deliver the goods once again.
Wissa should team up with Meschack Elia and Galatasaray’s Cederic Bakambu in the finals third, while Henoc Baka and Marseille’s Chancel Mbemba should form the centre-back pairing once again.
Sudan possible starting lineup:
Mustafa; Khamis, Saeed, Karshoum, Zayed; Hamed, Abuaagla, Adil, Mahmoud; Eisa, Thierry
Congo DR possible starting lineup:
M’Pasi; Kalulu, Mbemba, Baka, Ditu; Pickel, Moutoussamy, Kakuta; Elia, Wissa, Bakambu
We say: Sudan 0-2 Congo DR
Following their impressive opening-day victory, Congo DR will head into the weekend with sky-high confidence and they look to strengthen their position in the table. Desabre’s men have enjoyed the better of this fixture and we are backing them to extend their dominance over Sudan who have failed to win their last four matches.
For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.
Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting under 3.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Under 3.5:data
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