FIFA WC Qualifiers: Blessings in disguise as Otti and Ssenkatuka earns Cranes call

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~ Reason for Mugabi and Mubiru’s replacement

~ Capradossi to join Uganda Cranes camp on Thursday

~ Blessings in disguise for Otti and Senkatuka

~ Training kicks off on Friday

~ Uganda Cranes full Squad

~ #UgSportsNow

The Uganda Cranes, the national football team of Uganda, is gearing up for the FIFA 2026 World Cup Qualifiers against Botswana and Algeria with some key changes to the squad.

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Reason for Mugabi and Mubiru’s replacement

Ronald Otti

Defender Bevis Mugabi and striker Uchechukwu Ikpeazu Mubiru will miss out on the upcoming matches due to varying circumstances, prompting coach Paul Put to summon Ronald Otti and Nelson Ssenkatuka as replacements.

Bevis Mugabi, who plays for Motherwell FC in Scotland, informed Coach Put of his unavailability for the crucial fixtures scheduled for next month. Mugabi’s absence creates an opportunity for BUL FC defender Ronald Otti to step in and bolster the defensive line for the national team.

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Meanwhile, Uchechukwu Ikpeazu will also be absent from the squad due to health challenges, preventing him from making his debut with the national team. In his place, Nelson Ssenkatuka, who plays for Soltilo Bright Stars FC, has been called up to provide an attacking option for the team.

Nelson Senkatuka

The official announcement of these changes was made during a press conference held at the FUFA Complex and presided over by Rogers Byamukama, an Executive Committee Member responsible for Marketing and Communications at the Federation of Uganda Football Associations (FUFA).

The Uganda Cranes squad is set to gather for a residential camp at Cranes Paradise Hotel in Kisasi, commencing on Thursday, 30th May 2024. Locally based players will join the camp first, with foreign-based players such as Halidi Lwaliwa, Timothy Awany, and Isima Watenga set to arrive the following morning.

Elio Capradossi to join Uganda Cranes camp on Thursday

One of the foreign-based players, Italy-based defender Elio Capradossi, will land in Uganda on Thursday at 11 am and head straight to the camp to integrate with the squad ahead of the important qualifiers.

Blessings in disguise

The absence of Mugabi and Ikpeazu may pose challenges for the team, but the additions of Otti and Ssenkatuka bring fresh talent and depth to the squad. With a blend of experienced and emerging players, Coach Put will be looking to rally his team and secure positive results in the upcoming qualifications as Uganda aims to make its mark on the road to the FIFA 2026 World Cup.

Training kicks off on Friday

The first training session will start on Friday 31st May 2024 (4:30PM EAT) at Mandela National Stadium (Outside Pitch).

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Uganda will take on Botswana on 7th June 2024 and Algeria on 10th June 2024 with both games kicking off at 7:00PM EAT at Mandela National Stadium.

Uganda Cranes Squad


Isima Bid Rashid Watenga (Lamontville Golden Arrows FC, South Africa), Nafian Alionzi (Defence Forces FC, Ethiopia), Crispus Kusiima (Kitara FC, Uganda), Braddy Jeans Wokorach (SC Villa, Uganda)


Elvis Bwomono (St. Mirren FC, Scotland), Kenneth Semakula (SC Villa, Uganda), Isaac Muleme (FK Victoria Zizkov, Czech Republic), Abdu Aziizi Kayondo (MFK Vyskov, Czech Republic), Nicholas Mwere (BUL FC, Uganda),Ronald Otti (BUL FC, Uganda), Timothy Denis Awany (FC Ashdod, Israel), Capradossi Elio (Calcio Lecco FC, Italy), Halidi Lwaliwa (FK Bregainica Stip, North Macedonia)


Khalid Aucho (Yanga SC, Tanzania), Bobosi Byaruhanga (Austin FC, USA), Ronald Ssekiganda (SC Villa, Uganda), Joel Sserunjogi (KCCA FC, Uganda), Ibrahim Kasule (New York Red Bull II, USA),Travis Mutyaba (Zamalek SC, Egypt)


Steven Dese Mukwala (Asante Kotoko FC, Ghana),Nelson Ssenkatuka (Soltilo Bright Stars FC, Uganda), Denis Omedi (Kitara FC, Uganda), Muhammad Shaban (KCCA FC, Uganda), Fahad Aziz Bayo (MFK Vyskov, Czech Republic), Rogers Kassim Mato (Brera Strumica), Patrick Jonah Kakande (SC Villa, Uganda), Umar Lutalo (SC Villa, Uganda), Allan Okello (Vipers SC, Uganda)

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