Uganda Cranes head coach Sebestien Desabre Credit: © Kawowo Sports | AISHA NAKATO

Uganda Cranes head coach Sebastien Desabre was disappointed after the slim 1-0 loss to Central African Republic on Wednesday night in Niger.

[/media-credit] Uganda Cranes head coach Sebestien Desabre Credit: © Kawowo Sports | AISHA NAKATO

Speaking to the media after the CECAFA number one footballing nation fell to Ralph Kottoy’s goal at the Stade Général Seyni Kountché in Niamey, the Frenchman expressed plight as well as optimism.

We played very well but unfortunately did not get the result in our favour. It is very disappointing. I saw the players were generous and showed that they wanted to win. But, it was just one mistake that cost us the game.

Uganda Cranes, currently ranked 74th by FIFA fell short to a country that lies 41 places below on 115th position.

Without the first choice goalkeeper Denis Onyango who delayed to travel to Niger, El Merriekh shot stopper Salim Jamal was named in the goal posts ahead of KCCA’s Charles Lukwago.

El Geish Football Club midfielder Hassan Wasswa Mawanda took over the captain’s arm band to lead the rest of his teammates.

Desabre with his technical team made a couple of changes as he continues to assess the players and finding the right partnerships.

Midfielder William Luwagga Kizito who plays at CMS Politehnica Lasi in Romania was introduced for Sabail attacker Faruku Miya in the 54th minute in one of the two double substitutions.

Vipers’ winger Milton Karisa was the other change for new crowned Albanian second division champions, Yunus Sentamu.

Isaac Muleme, a left back based in Egypt with Assiouty came on for Cape Town City’s Allan “Dancing Rasta” Kateregga after 61 minutes and striker Edrisa Lubega of Floridsdorfer AC in Austria replaced East Bengal (India)’s Aucho Khaldi with three minute left on the clock.

Uganda Cranes face hosts Niger on Saturday, 2nd June 2018 in the second game.

Niger were held to a three all draw by Central African Republic in the opening game on Sunday.

This was Uganda Cranes fourth loss under Desabre in the last eight international matches having lost 3-1 to Zambia, 1-0 apiece to to Congo and Namibia.

Besides the 3-1 win at home against Sao Tome and Principe at Namboole, the rest have been draws, goal-less with Ivory Coast at CHAN 2018 and with Guinea and Malawi at home in international build up games.

Uganda Cranes Line up Vs Central African Republic:

Jamal Salim (G.K), Denis Iguma, Joseph Ochaya, Murushid Jjuuko, Timothy Awanyi, Khalid Aucho (87’ Edrisa Lubega), Hassan Wasswa Mawanda (Captain), Faruku Miya (54’ William Luwagga Kizito), Yunus Sentamu (54’ Milton Karisa), Emmanuel Okwi, Allan Kateregga (61’ Isaac Muleme)

Subs Not Used:

Charles Lukwago (G.K), Allan Kyambadde, Taddeo Lwanga, Moses Opondo, Bevis Mugabi

Uganda Cranes Games under Desabre:

  • 30th May 2018: Central African Republic 1-0 Uganda (International Friendly)
  • 27th March 2018: Uganda Cranes 0-0 Malawi (International Friendly Match)
  • 24th March 2018: Uganda Cranes 3-1 Sao Tome and Principe (International Friendly Match)
  • 22nd January 2018: Uganda Cranes 0-0 Ivory Coast (CHAN 2018)
  • 18th January 2018: Uganda Cranes 0-1 Namibia (CHAN 2018)
  • 14th January 2018: Zambia 3-1 Uganda (CHAN 2018)
  • 10th January 2018: Uganda Cranes 0-1 Congo (International Friendly Match)
  • 6th January 2018: Uganda Cranes 1-1 Guinea

David Isabirye is a senior staff writer for Kawowo Sports where he covers most of the major events.

Join the Conversation


  1. The coach needs to find a winning formulae as soon as possible. He should look at his current strategy and how the team played in the recent past under Micho and try to marry the two. He should not try too hard to introduce a new system the players are not a keen to. He be relying on the players who do not fit his strategies well.

    1. It’s early days. The players have just landed in Niger and this is Desabre is just starting to work on the real team.

      Scoring is still a problem but it will take some time to inculcate a scoring mindset into of some of these players.

  2. I see Desabre getting stranded at some point. If you can lose to CAR and Namibia, you can for sure lose to Cape Verde and Tanzania. I foresee a situation where Tanzania comes here and draws, Cape Verde comes here and wins and Tanzania goes on to beat Uganda is Dar Es Salaam. AFCON 2019 will be gone.
    For a national team, Desabre is taking too long to establish himself or his system as such. Look at Gernot Rohr the Nigeria coach. He didn’t take that long to have the team play the way he wants. If the players are not responding the way Desabre wants them to, then he has to make some adjustments. If his intention is to completely change the playing system, he has to accept to sacrifice qualification for AFCON 2019. The question is, will Ugandans be willing to wait?

    1. Desabre is taking too long?
      How many times has Desabre worked with the core Cranes’ players? Not much.

      We should be grateful for this tournament because this is the first time he is now seriously working with all the core Cranes’ players.

      You should also consider the fact that the players have just landed in Niger from far flung places.

      The main concern is the lack of goals. You can let in one goal but you should score goals at the other end.
      The Cranes seem to have lost that instinct to attack and score goals.
      It will take time to undo it.

      Another option is to just bring in new attacking minded players but then you lose the hard earned experience of the veterans.

  3. DISABRE is a total failure with plenty of good players and you fall to central african republic and starting with jumal salim in a goal that is not a mistake its you who is a mistake to have big cranes job in your hands. my last word to this poor english speaking man its the time to to fore go his funny fomations and follow our traditional style of play the way we have been playing under micho

Leave a comment

Please let us know what you think