Uganda National football team (Uganda Cranes) will be making their fifth straight appearance in the 2021 Total African Nations Championships in Cameroon.
The sixth edition of the tournament will run from 16th January to 7th February 2021 which will be played in four stadium namely Japoma and Stade de la Reunification both located in city of Douala, Stade Ahmadou Ahidjo found in capital city Yaounde and Limbe stadium located in Limbe.
Uganda Cranes have qualified in the last four editions of the tourney which is only meant to feature players playing in their respective local leagues.
And among the last four editions, Uganda has never gone past the group stages.
Uganda has been pooled in group C along Morocco, neighbors Rwanda and Togo who are making their debut.
Group C will be based in Douala city and playing their games in Stade de la Reunification.
Uganda at glance, ndibba.com is looking at Cranes chances of making past the group stages for the first time.
Unlike in the previous editions were Uganda’s preparations prior to the competitions raised alot of questions with few answers, this time round the team has had good preparations starting with the 2019 Cecafa Senior Challenge Cup which were hosted in Kampala before the tournament was postponed due to the Covid-19.
Ten (10) out of the Players who are on the final 25 man squad which was released by Johnathan Mcknistry were part of the Dubai training camp which was organized in Dubai in October last 2020 in preparation for the double header against South Sudan in Afcon qualifiers.
On just concluded week, Uganda finished as the best team in the Pre-mini Chan tournament which has been organized in Cameroon and manged to win two of three games they played against Zambia (2-0), Niger (3-0) and one ending draw with Cameroon (1-1).
They have now embarked on a seven day training camp together with KCCA FC four players who were on club’s duty in CAF Confederation Cup, with 6 days left to kickoff the tournament.
For the first time when the group draws were being held, Uganda was pooled in pot 3, Morocco in pot 1, Rwanda pot 2 and lastly Togo pot 4.
When you look at Uganda’s top-flight league in general, it’s only Moroccan league Botola which beats them. Rwanda premier league and Togolese league below Uganda Premier League in terms of ranking.
And it’s not by mistake Uganda jointly with Zimbabwe and Democratic Republic of Congo boosts the most appearances in the competition (5).
JOHNATHAN Mcknistry’s experience in competition.
It’s not going to be the first time that Northern Ireland Coach, Johnathan Mcknistry is coaching in this kind of competition, when Rwanda was making history by making the quarter finals in 2016, a tournament they hosted was the behind that team.
EXPERIENCE IN TEAM.
Uganda Cranes will rely on experience of most senior players who are on the team, who have at least played at the top level with the senior team (Uganda Cranes).
Tonny Mawejje, Charles Lukwago, Denis Iguma, Mohammed Shaban, Milton Karisa and Mohammed Shaban have been in Cranes senior team set up for quite a long time. And their experience would spur the team to a better performance.
BLEND OF TALENTS IN SQUAD.
The final named squad for the competition is composed of young and talented players who have got urge to archive more, the likes of Aziz Kayondo, youngest player on team Karim Watambala, Bright Anukani, Joackim Ojera and Boboosi Byaruhanga.
The squad has seven offensive players which includes the current league leading top scorer Brian Ahebwa (7), Karisa Milton, Ben Ocen and this has been evidently witnessed in just concluded Pre-mini Chan tournament were six goals were scored in 3 games recording an average scoring of 2 goals each game.