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Hippos take narrow lead in AFCON qualifiers against Cameroon

Hippos starting IX against Cameroon on Saturday.

CAF U-20 AFCON Qualifiers
Uganda 1-0 Cameroon
StarTimes Stadium, Lugogo
Saturday, 12-05-2018

Uganda will take a 1-0 lead to Cameroon in one weeks time after defeating the young Indomitable Lions at the StarTimes Stadium in Lugogo.

Qualifiers top scorer Steven Mukwala’s goal at the stroke of half time was all that the Hippos required in a game the Cameroon dominated for the larger part.

Uganda started brightly with Allan Okello pouncing on a loose ball by the Cameroonians but shot wide in the first minute of the game.

Allan Okello does his thing against Cameroon on Saturday

Four minutes later, Vipers’ defender, Geoffrey Wasswa found himself unmarked in the area but could only stir his header over the bar after a looping corner by Allan Okello.

The central defender again had a chance from a Julius Poloto corner but headed wide on 11 minutes.

Cameroon started growing into the game and it was Wasswa to the rescue as he intercepted a goal bound shot from Ndi Rene Nzonewo after the striker was played in on goal beautifully by Ako Assomo Martin.

The Cameroonians should have taken the lead midway the first half but Kpene Gango Ignatius’s fierce shot while one on one with Hippos custodian, Saidi Keni, rattled the upright and went out of touch for a goal kick.

Wasswa again headed wide another Julius Poloto corner, much to the frustration of the home fans after the defender had failed to hit the target on three occasions.

Hippos captain Julius Poloto rises highest to head a ball against Cameroon at the StarTimes stadium in Lugogo

Cameroonian midfielder Sakava Noise found himself through on goal on the 33th minute mark but could not beat Keni as the goalkeeper’s trailing leg connected with the goal bound shot and out for a corner.

At the stroke of half time, Poloto sent in a corner from the left and it was connected with brilliantly by Steven Mukwala at the far post to make it 1-0 to the Hippos.

Two minutes into the second half, Mukwala shot fiercely after pouncing onto a lose ball in the Cameroonian area but Atangana Christopher in the Indomitable Lions goal was equal to the task as he dived low to his left and pureed the ball out for a corner.

Six minutes later, Atangana ran out of his box to clear a long pass, his clearance fell into the path of Okello who lobbed the keeper but Ndedi Karl was quick to react and divert the ball out for a corner.

With five minutes of the 90 to play, the ever green Julius Poloto threaded a ball in for Mukwala and the striker found himself running through on goal but could not beat Atangana again.

The last chance of the game fell to Cameroonian striker Kpene Ignatius but his close range shot struck Keni’s chest and Uganda cleared there lines much to the applause of the home fans.

Uganda will now travel to Yaounde for the second leg next week and will have wing back Mustapha Kiiza back after completing his two match suspension.

Kiiza was sent off against South Sudan for unsporting behaviour and has sat out both the second leg of the game against South Sudan and Saturday’s win over Cameroon.

Steven Mukwala still leads the coring chats with four goals from three matches and will be the man looked at to inflict the desired damage onto Cameroon.

Hippos Starting XI:

Keni Saidi (GK), Willa Paul, Kitabalwa Robert, Mujuzi Mustafa, Wasswa Geofrey, Kasule Abubakar, Poloto Julius, Eyam Ivan, Mukwala Steven, Tumwesigye Frank, Allan Okello.

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