Uganda Cranes head coach Milutin “Micho” Sredojevic has named 35 players on the provisional team ahead of the upcoming four nation mini-tournament in Uzbekistan.
Team captain Emmanuel Arnold Okwi, now with Kiyovu Sports in Rwanda and Farouk Miya have returned after missing out in the recent past for different reasons.
The other returnees also include; Allan Kyambadde, Allan Okello and others.
Soltilo Bright Stars’ midfielder Marvin Youngman is set for his senior debut after the maiden summon on the team that has U-20 graduates as Steven Sserwadda, Derrick Kakooza, Najib Yiga, Bobosi Byaruhanga, goalkeeper Jack Komakech and others.
Uganda will play in a four nation mini-tournament (Navruz Cup 2022) in Uzbekistan between 25th to 29th March in Markaziy Stadium, Namangan city against Tajikistan, hosts Uzbekistan and the Kyrgz Republic.
“After qualifying for two consecutive AFCON finals in 2017 and 2019, Uganda Cranes missed out for the 2021 edition in Cameroon. We immediately went for early preparations to ensure qualification for AFCON 2023 in Ivory Coast with an international friendly match in South Africa, CECAFA senior challenge cup in Ethiopia (U-23), international build up in Ethiopia, six FIFA World Cup qualification matches and recently a UEFA-Asia tour. The upcoming mini-tournament in Uzbekistan will help us to do the main general check-up before the AFCON 2023 qualifiers in June 2022 (1st – 14th June). We have been in transition where several players have retired including captain Dennis Onyango, Hassan Wasswa, Mike Azira, Juuko and others. We have an important duty therefore to make ourselves ready’”Micho as quoted by the FUFA website disclosed.
“We shall test the players with internal regional build up and tune the competitive mode since friendly matches are all about trying, testing and experiment before naming the final 23 players who will travel to Uzbekistan.” He added.
The summoned team has a total of 35 players, a bulk of whom (20) are locally based, plying their trade in the Uganda Premier League.
Goalkeepers: Charles Lukwago (St George, Ethiopia), Alionzi Nafian (URA, Uganda), Isma Watenga (Chippa United, South Africa), Benjamin Ochan (KCCA, Uganda), Jack Komakech (Vipers, Uganda)
Defenders: James Begisa (UPDF, Uganda), Hassan Jurua (KCCA, Uganda), Isaac Muleme (Viktoria Zizkov, Czech Republic), Herbert Achai (KCCA), Bevis Mugabi (Motherwell, Scotland), Timothy Denis Awanyi (Ashdod, Israel), Halid Lwaliwa (Vipers, Uganda), Livingstone Mulondo (Vipers, Uganda), Fesali Najib (URA, Uganda)
Central Midfielders: Khalid Aucho (Yanga, Tanzania), Bobosi Byaruhanga (Vipers, Uganda), Steven Sserwadda (Red Bull New York, USA), George Kasonko (BUL, Uganda), Marvin Youngman (Soltilo Bright Stars, Uganda), Moses Waiswa (Supersport United, South Africa)
Attacking Midfielders: Allan Okello (Paradou, Algeria), Martin Kizza (Express, Uganda), Najib Yiga (Vipers, Uganda), Allan Kyambadde (El Gouna, Egypt), Farouk Miya (Lviv, Ukraine), Milton Karisa (Vipers, Uganda), Rogers Mato (KCCA, Uganda)
Forwards: Emmanuel Arnold Okwi (Kiyovu, Rwanda), Patrick Henry Kaddu (KCCA, Uganda), Mohamed Shaban (Onduparaka, Uganda), Fahad Bayo (Bnei Sakhin), Derrick Kakooza (Walmiera, Lativa), Alfred Leku (Arua Hill, Uganda), Yunus Junior Sentamu (Vipers, Uganda), Sadat Happy Anaku (KCCA, Uganda)