By Alex Bossa
Date: Thursday 10th June 2021
Time: 7:00 Pm Ugandan time
Venue: Orlando Stadium Johannesburg South Africa
Head coach Abdallah Mubiru is optimistic that the national team will come out of South Africa with a positive result when the Uganda Cranes face Bafana Bafana in an international friendly at the Orlando Stadium in Johannesburg.
The team conducted their final training at the Orlando Stadium in Johannesburg in the cold winter conditions but looked relaxed after a motivational speech on day one from former national team captain Denis Onyango who had visited the camp.
The Cranes will be looking at registering their first victory against Bafana Bafana after losing two games and drawing one which they eventually lost on spot kicks. The two losses were registered in the 2006 Germany FIFA World Cup qualifiers where the Cranes lost 1-0 at Namboole through a Benni McCarthy penalty before losing the reverse fixture 2-1 in South Africa with Steven Pienner scoring the winner after David Obua’s penalty kick had cancelled out Manchester United’s Quinton Fortune opener.
The closest the Cranes have matched the South Africans is when they locked horns in the 2019 COSAFA cup semi-final match at Princess Magogo Stadium in Durban where Dan Sserunkuma gave the Cranes an early lead only for Luther Singh to level the matters through a powerful shot passed by Charles Lukwago in the 72nd minute. The match went straight away into the spot kicks and the Cranes lost the game after Mustafa Kizza and Juma Balinya missed their spot kicks.
Today’s game at the Orlando stadium presents an opportunity for both teams to prepare for the upcoming Qatar 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifiers. Uganda is in Group E along with Mali, Kenya and Rwanda while South Africa is in Group G alongside Ethiopia, Ghana and Zimbabwe.
South Africa Probable lineup: 4-5-1 Formation
Goalkeeper: Bruce Bvuma (Kaizer Chiefs)
Defense: Nkosinathi Sibisi (Golden Arrows), Rushine De Reuck (Mamelodi Sundowns), Innocent Maela(Orlando Pirates) and Sibusiso Mabiliso(AmaZulu)
Midfield: Mothobi Mvala (Mamelodi Sundowns), Aubrey Modiba (Mamelodi Sundowns), Keagan Dolly (Montpellier), Lebohang Maboe (Mamelodi Sundowns), Craig Martin (Cape Town City)
Attack: Bongokuhle Hlongwane (Maritzburg United)
Subs: Ronwen Williams (Supersport United), Denwin Farmer (Baroka Fc), Evidence Makgopa (Baroka FC), Njabulo Ngcobo (Swallows), Ethan Brooks (TS Galaxy), Thabang Monare (Orlando Pirates), and Thabiso Kutumela (Maritzburg United).
Uganda Cranes probable lineup: 4-3-3 Formation
Goal Keeper: Ismail Watenga (Chippa United)
Defense: Muhamud Hassan (Police), Kizza Mustafa (CF Montreal), Juuko Murushid (Express), Lwaliwa Halid (Vipers)
Mid field: Lwanga Taddeo (Simba), Byaruhanga Bobosi (Vipers), Kagimu Kuchi Shafik (URA)
Attack: Emmanuel Arnold Okwi (Captain; Al Ittihad Alexandria Club), Kakooza Derrick (Police, Uganda), Orit Ibrahim (Vipers)
Subs: Mathias Kigonya (Azam), Charles Lukwago (KCCA), Paul Willa (Vipers), Kayondo Abdu Aziizi (Vipers), Walusimbi Enock (Express), Mbowa Paul Patrick (URA), Okello Allan (AC Paradou), Waiswa Moses Ndhondhi (SuperSport United), Lumala Abdul (Pyramids), Mugulusi Isma (Busoga United), Sserwadda Steven (KCCA), Mukwala Steven (URA, Uganda)