Saturday March 26, 2016

Burkina Faso Vs Uganda – Stade 4 Août, Ouagadougou @ 9pm

Uganda Cranes’ road to Gabon 2017 faces yet another hurdle as they visit Burkina Faso in Ouagadougou in a group D qualifier on Saturday.

The Cranes sitting top of the group with maximum points from two games seek to extend the perfect run but in Burkina Faso, they face their biggest test of the campaign so far.

Ahead of the game, Cranes Captain Geoffrey Massa has warned his teammates that the back to back clashes against the 1998 AFCON hosts will make or break the dream.

“Of course if we lose the two games then we will be out of the competition but we won’t allow that because we know how important this game is,” he said before adding that picking three points will be perfect. “It would be perfect if we picked maximum points. That would give us more authority coming back for the return leg next Tuesday,” he added.

Burkina Faso Team News

Coach Paul Duarte named a strong 25 man squad for the back to back games including Chelsea forward Bertrand Traore, attacking midfielders Jonathan Pitroipa as well as Charles Kabore.

The Portuguese who led the Stallions to two Africa Nations Cup finals in 2010 and 2012 has kept everything close to his chest.

The Squad:

1- Abdoulaye SOULAMA: Heart of Oak (Ghana), 2. Daouda DIAKITE : Free State Stars FC (South Africa), 3-Koffi KOUAKOU :ASEC d’Abidjan (Côte d’Ivoire), 4-Bakary KONE : Olympique Lyonnais (France), 5-YAGO Steeve : Toulouse (France), 6-Abdoul Aziz KABORE : Valenciennes (France), 7-Bakary SARE : Guimarães (Portugal), 8-Abdoul Razak TRAORE : Konyaspor (Turkey), 9-Alain TRAORE : Lorient FC (France), 10-Aristide BANCE : Chippa United (South Africa), 11-Charles KABORE : FC Krasnodar (Russia), 12-Bakary KONE : Dibba Al Fujayira (UAE), 13-Jonathan ZONGO : Almeria (Spain), 14-Yacouba MANDO : Kozaf (Burkina Faso), 15-Issouf DAYO : RC Berkane (Morocco), 16-Préjuce NAKOULMA : Mersin Idmanyurdu Sport Klubu (Turkey), 17- Issa GOUO : ASFA (Ghana), 18- Jonathan PITROIPA : AL Nasr (Dubai), 19-Bertrand TRAORE : Chelsea (England), 20- Patrick MALO :JS Kabylie (Algérie), 21-Adama GUIRA : Sonderjyske (Denmark), 22-Cyrille BAYALA : Daklyeh (Egypt), 23-Cyrille KPAN : USFA (Burkina Faso), 24-Yacouba COULIBALY : RCB (Burkina Faso) and 25-Banou DIAWARA : JS Kabylie (Algérie)

Uganda Cranes Team News

The Uganda Cranes touched down in Burkina Faso on Thursday afternoon in buoyant mood and so far no injuries reported.

The biggest question mark now remains on who Micho and technical staff names for the do or die.

Players to Watch

Bertrand Traore (Burkina Faso)

The youngster has enjoyed good moments with Chelsea and his pace will trouble the Cranes defence.

A deadly left foot coupled with good technical abilities will be key if the Stallions are to beat the Cranes

Tony Mawejje (Uganda)

He boosts of two goals in away matches for Uganda Cranes and has always been a vital component in the midfield.

Against the likes Charles Kabore and company, Mawejje must be ready to orchestrate proceedings and earn Cranes at least a point in Burkinabe.

Head to Head

The two teams have met four times winning once each and drawing the other. The two draws have come at home; 2-2 in the 2006 FIFA World Cup qualifiers and a goalless international friendly.

Uganda Cranes win came at the 2014 CHAN finals beating the Stallion 2-1 thanks to a brace from Yunus Sentamu whilst Cranes their last and only visit to Ouagadougou 2-0.

FACTS:

  • Uganda last qualified for the finals in 1978 while Burkina Faso has qualified nine times since then with the latest coming in 2015
  • The Cranes have won their previous two competitive away games; 1-0 versus Comoros and Togo
  • Uganda has won just two of the third games in the Afcon qualifiers in the previous nine campaigns drawing once and losing six.
  • In the failed 2015 Afcon qualifiers, Uganda lost 1-0 to Togo at this stage.

Uganda Cranes Probable XI:

Denis Onyango (GK), Denis Iguma, Joseph Ochaya, Murushid Jjuuko, Isaac Isinde, Aucho Khalid, Tonny Mawejje, William Luwagga Kizito, Farouk Miya, Geoffrey Massa (C) and Godfrey Walusimbi.

Substitutes:

Robert Odongkara (GK), Emmanuel Okwi, Hassan Wasswa Mawanda, Timothy Awanyi, Mike Azira, Hamis Kiiza and Moses Oloya

Senior Staff writer at Kawowo Sports mainly covering football

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