Ethiopia coach Wubetu has put their 2021 AFCON opening loss to Cape Verde on inexperience and an early red card.
Ethiopia lost 1-0 to Cape Verde in a game they played with 10 men for about 80 minutes after Yared Bayeh’s red card in the 12th minute after VAR.
Julio Tavares close range header helped Cape Verde pick a needed win but Ethiopian keeper Teklemariam Shanko Balcha made some good saves to give the score a decent look.
“We lacked experience against a good Cape Verdean team,” said coach Abate.
“A defeat is true but we will learn lessons for our next matches. We played almost the entire game in a numerical inferiority and that did not help us. helped especially physically.”
Ethiopia are playing at AFCON after an absence of eight years. They last played at AFCON during the 2013 tournament in South Africa.
The Ethiopia squad is dominated by locally based players featuring in the Ethiopian Premier League with only two abroad based players in Shemeles Bekele (El Gouna, Egypt) and Mujib Kassim (JS Kabilye, Algeria).
Per CAF, Bekele together with Getaneh Kebede and goalkeeper Jemal Tasew are the only three players who were part of Ethiopia’s team in their last appearance at the 2013 AFCON held in South Africa.
The Walias will face the Indomitable Lions of Cameroon on January 13th in their second group match. They will play their last Group match against Burkina Faso on January 17th.
Did you know?
•The Ethiopian team was the first of the qualified teams to arrive in Cameroon.
•Ethiopia won the Africa Cup of Nations in 1962 on home soil.