The striker got off the mark for his county in last Sunday’s 4-0 win over Zimbabwe, also helping create a penalty for strike partner Cedric Bakambu after coming off the bench at half-time.

It was a contribution that proved crucial for The Leopards, with DR Congo narrowly qualifying for the last 16 as one of the highest ranked third-placed teams in the competition.

Scoring his first goal in Congolese colours was an emotional moment for Assombalonga, as well as father Fedor who represented their country (then named Zaire) in the same tournament in 1992.

“This moment is up there with the best, especially after hearing stories of past players playing and scoring goals for Congo, and me doing it as well is an amazing feeling,” Britt told earlier this week.

“It was unbelievable and I know he’s a proud dad at the moment.

“I heard he was in tears after I scored that goal and I’m just happy for my whole family because I know everyone was cheering me and the whole team on.

“There are regrets, but at the end of the day we can’t live on the regrets and just have to focus on what we’ve done now and hope we can go through and carry on this momentum.

“We have done what we could’ve done today and we just have to hope and wait. It’s going to be a long couple of days but we just have to rest up and be ready if we do go through.”

After a nervous wait for Britt and co, results elsewhere confirmed a place in the last 16 of the tournament in Egypt.

And tonight they are up against Madagascar at the Alexandria Stadium (kick-off 5pm UK), one of the surprise packages of this AFCON so far.

In fact, the last meeting between Madagascar and DR Congo saw Britt’s country win 6-1 on away territory, back in 2016.

But despite being ranked 108th in the world by FIFA, island minnows Madagascar earned seven points in the group stage, beating John Obi Mikel’s Nigeria to Top Group A.

As demonstrated in a last 16 stage that has already seen Benin edge out Morocco and hosts Egypt lose to South Africa, nothing can be taken for granted.

Following his goalscoring exploits Britt could well be handed his first start of the tournament so far.

The man he replaced at the break last weekend, Jonathan Bolingi, has not recovered from the injury that forced the change, and has returned to club side Royal Antwerp.

That means if coach Florent Ibengé opts to remain with his preferred 4-4-2 formation, Assombalonga could well line up up top with Bakambu.

And while Britt will be hoping to extend DR Congo’s AFCON stay and thus delay his return to Boro this pre-season, the striker offered positive comments about proceedings back home, namely the appointment of a familiar face as head coach.

"Jonathan Woodgate is a great guy," Assombalonga told the BBC.

“Under Tony Pulis he always encouraged all the boys and made sure all the boys were good.

"Obviously being a player recently, he brought that vibe around the place, you can always talk to him and be level with him. I'm happy for him to have that job because I think he deserves it.

“You could see he had it in him and there's not going to be one bad word around the place. Everyone loves him from the staff, the players - and everyone loves him.”