2013 AFCON entertainers Ethiopia’s 2014 World Cup prospects will be tested on Sunday when they host Botswana in Addis Ababa.
Ethiopia resumes its quest to reach the Brazil finals next year with their reputation enhanced after playing some entertaining football at the Africa Cup of Nations last January in South Africa.
The Walias, who failed to win a single game despite playing some exciting football before making an early exited in South Africa, are currently unbeaten in Group A with four points from two games and are a point ahead of second placed Central Africa Republic while Bafana-Bafana are third on two points.
Ethiopia is also unbeaten at home in Group A after two games played where they thumped CAR 2-0 in their last game there on June 10.
Coach Bishaw Sewnet will bank on the form of the exciting midfielder Saladin Said and striker Getaneh Kebede who both return to keep Ethiopia’s dreams alive on the penultimate hurdle on the road to Brazil.
Meanwhile, Botswana prepared for the game with a 1-0 win over Malawi in a friendly on Tuesday in Gaborone ahead of departure for Addis on a charter plane on Thursday.
Botswana is desperate to get their 2014 qualifiers back on track after collecting just one point from their opening two games.
Coach Stan Tshosane said he is well aware of what to expect from Ethiopia.
“I saw them thrive on counter attacks in one of their games in South Africa so we have to be alert,” Tshosane said.
Defeat in Addis will almost see BotswanaÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s dreams dashed and Ethiopia’s final qualifying round chances boosted heading into the return leg match in Gaborone in mid-June.