Kenya Harambee Stars host neighbors Uganda Cranes in the group E of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 qualifiers.
In the match that will be played at the Nyayo National Stadium, Nairobi on Thursday, 2nd September 2021, either of the two East African nations will want to win and close up on Mali.
Mali beat another Cecafa member Rwanda 1-0 on September 1.
Milutin “Micho” Sredojevic, the head coach of Uganda Cranes is optimistic he has done just enough to warrant his a victory.
“We have assembled a team that will compete. Derbies are always determined by the slightest details. We want to pay keen attention to such details and win the game,” Micho said.
Without contradicting his coach’s optimism, team captain Emmanuel Arnold Okwi believes the Cranes are ready for the challenge but emphasized the importance of team work.
“As we face Kenya, I am captain and only wear the armband. But, the rest of my teammates are all captains as we fight for our country. We seek a good start as we face Kenya on Thursday,” Okwi told Fufa website.
As a way to get acclimatized, Micho and his boys pitched camp in Ethiopia and held a trial match the national side which the Uganda lost 2-1.
Vipers SC striker Yunus Sentamu scored Uganda’s sole goal. However, coach Micho said the team never left Bahir Dar International Stadium the way they came.
“A football game is far better than 30 training sessions. We have seen where we need to improve coming to the Kenya and Mali games,” the Serbian noted after the game.
After the game on Thursday in Nairobi, Uganda will host Mali on September 6,2021 at the St Mary’s stadium, Kitende on match day two.
The players in camp:
Goalkeepers: Isma Watenga (Chippa United, South Africa), Charles Lukwago (KCCA, Uganda), Joel Mutakubwa (Express, Uganda)
Defenders: Isaac Muleme (Viktoria Žižkov, Czech Republic), Mustapha Kizza (CF Montréal, Canada), Enock Walusimbi (Express, Uganda), Joseph Benson Ochaya (TP Mazembe, DR Congo), Halid Lwaliwa (Vipers, Uganda), Murushid Juuko (Express, Uganda), Innocent Wafula (Mbarara City, Uganda), Denis Iguma (KCCA, Uganda), Gavin Kizito Mugweri (SC Villa, Uganda), Abdul Aziizi Kayondo (Vipers, Uganda)
Midfielders: Khalid Aucho (Young Africans, Tanzania), Bobosi Byaruhanga (Vipers, Uganda), Moses Waiswa (Super Sport United, South Africa), Ibrahim Orit (Vipers, Uganda),
Forwards: Derrick Nsibambi (Smouha, Egypt), Yunus Sentamu (Vipers, Uganda), Milton Karisa (Vipers, Uganda), Emmanuel Arnold Okwi – Captain, Richard Basangwa (Vipers, Uganda), Steven Desse Mukwala (URA, Uganda)