Midfielder Ivan Irinimbabazi addresses the media at Entebbe International Airport prior to his departure to Scotland | Credit: David Isabirye

Overview:

Uganda U-20 midfielder Ivan Irinimbabazi left Entebbe International Airport on Saturday, January 21, 2023 aboard Emirates Airlines, alongside two other young Ugandan footballers attackers Hakim Kiwanuka and Alex Yiga.

Uganda U-20 midfielder Ivan Irinimbabazi traveled to Scotland for professional trials with premiership side Dundee United Football Club, home of Sadat Happy Anaku.

Irinimbabazi was granted special permission to leave the on-going residential camp at FUFA Technical Centre, Njeru (in preparation for the 2023 AFCON U-20 tournament in Egypt).

The towering midfielder is currently a student at St Mary’s Boarding School – Kitende and a licensed player at Uganda Premier League entity Soltilo Bright Stars.

Ivan Irinimbabazi smiles at Entebbe International Airport departures | Credit: David Isabirye

He left Entebbe International Airport on Saturday, January 21, 2023 aboard Emirates Airlines, alongside two other young Ugandan footballers attackers Hakim Kiwanuka and Alex Yiga.

The trio was accompanied by intermediary Herbert Ella Angura, traveled from Entebbe via Dubai and Manchester before they will reach their final destinations in Scotland.

They were officially flagged off by legislator Fredrick Angura at Entebbe International Airport, adjacent the lavish VIP lounge.

 “It feels great to travel to Europe as I seek for professional football. I thank all my coaches that I have worked with in my football journey, the club (Soltilo Bright Stars), Festoweb Sports Management, parents and friends for the encouragement” Irinimbabazi who has already represented Uganda at the U-17 and U-20 levels noted.

Hon Fredrick Angura hands over the Uganda national flag to youngsters Alex Yiga (middle) and Hakim Kiwanuka at Entebbe International Airport | Credit: David Isabirye
L-R: Hakim Kiwanuka, Alex Yiga and Ivan Irinimbabazi in Dubai | Credit: Festoweb Sports Management

Yiga is a creative midfielder for the Uganda U-17 national team and Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) Soccer Academy currently in S5 at Dynamic Secondary School in Mukono whilst Kiwanuka is at Proline Football Club, currently in the third division league.

Yiga will have his trials at Glasgow Rangers and Kiwanuka will be placed at St Mirren Football Club, an entity based in Paisley, Renfrewshire.

The three players traveled under Festoweb Sports Management, whose maiden trip to Europe was to Spain under Team Fundi arrangement in 2022 on a special football showcase exhibition.

Sadat Happy Anaku (Dundee United) and Enock Walusimbi (Peterhead) were successfully signed in Scotland.

Kawowo Sports has established that two more players will travel to Spain for different trials under the same arrangement next week.

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

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