Being promoted to the top flight football league in any country is a dream come true for any club playing in the lower division. It comes with joy and expectations, but also comes with pressure to stay up.
Such is what two Rwanda sides Etoile de l’Est, Amagaju are experiencing after being promoted to the Rwanda Premier League in the games played over the weekend.
Eastern Province-based Etoile de l’Est and Amagaju FC from Northern Province earned their slots in the RPL after the former were crowned champions of the second division and the latter finished second.
After the regular season in the Rwanda second tier, the top four teams advanced to the mini- tournament played in order to decide the two teams to be promoted to the topflight.
At Nyagisenyi stadium home of Amagaju FC, Amagaju FC beat Etoile de l’Est 1-0 thanks to Paul Ilunga while At Mumena stadium, Vision FC and Gicumbi FC shared spoils after a 1-1 draw.
All teams played each other in home and away format where Etoile de l’Est ended first with 10 points and 3 goals in the bag, Amagaju finished second with the same points but with an inferior goal difference.
Etoile de l’Est were crowned champions of the second division after winning three, drawing one and losing two of the six games they played in the mini-tournament.
Second-placed Amagaju won three games, draw one and lost two, which was enough to secure them automatic promotion to top flight football at the expense of Gicumbi FC and Vision FC who finished third and fourth respectively.
Etoile de l’Est spent only one season in second division having been relegated in the 2021-2022 season while Amagaju FC’s promotion ended their five year wait to return to the Rwanda Premier League following relegation after the 2018-2019 season.