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Uganda Cranes arrive in Egypt ahead of AFCON 2019

The Cranes arrived in Cairo on Monday evening. (PHOTO/FUFA)

The Uganda men’s football national team, the Cranes, have already arrived in Egypt ahead of the upcoming 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) tournament.

The Cranes arrived in Egypt’s capital-Cairo, on Monday night following two weeks of intense training in Abu Dhabi.

A delegation of 23 players and 12 officials was warmly received by the CAF protocol team at Cairo International Airport and the FUFA Advance party led by the leader of delegation and FUFA Executive member, Hon Florence Nakiwala Kiyingi.

The team reached Cairo at 7:30 PM aboard Egypt Air from Abu Dhabi and later checked in at Radisson Blu Hotel where they will be accommodated throughout their AFCON stay.

Uganda is in Group A alongside hosts-Egypt, DR Congo and Zimbabwe.

The Cranes have spent the last month or so, preparing for the tournament.

Initially squad of home-based and two unattached players, started training a month ago while camped at Kabira Country Club, played a friendly game with the COSAFA team before they flew to Abu Dhabi.

In Abu Dhabi, they were joined by several professionals as the team beefed-up preps.

While in Abu Dhabi, Uganda played two build-up games, drawing 0-0 with Turkmenistan and then defeated Ivory Coast 1-0.

The Uganda Cranes team that defeated Ivory Coast 1-0. (PHOTO/FUFA)

After such high levels of preparations, the Cranes are highly expected to better their last showing at the AFCON finals. In 2017, Uganda exited the competition at the group stage, having lost two and drawn one of their three games.

With the competition expanded to 24 teams from the initial 26, it would spell disaster if Uganda fails to reach the knock-out stages.

The final 23-man squad in Egypt

Goalkeepers

Denis Onyango (Mamelodi Sundowns, South Africa), Jamal Salim (Al Hilal-Sudan), Robert Odongkara (Adama City, Ethiopia)

Defenders

Nico Wakiro Wadada (Azam, Tanzania), Brian Ronald Ddungu Mukiibi (Ostersunds, Sweden), Murushid Jjuuko (Simba, Tanzania), Bevis Mugabi (Yeovil Town, England), Isaac Muleme (FK Viktoria Zizkov, Czech Republic), Hassan Wasswa Mawanda (Un attached), Joseph Ochaya (TP Mazembe, DR Congo), Timothy Denis Awanyi (KCCA FC, Uganda), Godfrey Walusimbi (Un-attached)

Midfielders

Mike Azira (Montreal Impact, Canada), Allan Kateregga (Maritzburg, South Africa), William Kizito Luwagga (Shakhter Karagandy, Kazakhstan), Khalid Aucho (Church Hill Brothers, India), Faruku Miya (HNK Gorica, Croatia), Abdul Lumala (Syrianska, Sweden), Tadeo Lwanga (Vipers SC-Uganda)

Strikers

atrick Henry Kaddu (KCCA FC, Uganda), Derrick Nsibambi (Smouha, Egypt), Allan Kyambadde (KCCA FC Uganda), Emmanuel Arnold Okwi (Simba, Tanzania)

Officials in Egypt

FUFA President: Eng. Moses Magogo

Executive Committee Members: Issa Magola & Rogers Byamukama

Head coach: Sebastien Desabre

Assistant coach: Mathias Lule

Goalkeeper coach: Fred Kajoba

Team Doctor: Dr. Ronald Kisolo

Physiotherapist: Dr. Ivan Ssewanyana

Team Chiropractor: Dr. Charles Sebwana

Media: Ahmed Hussein

Physical Fitness trainer: Gerome D’Antonio

Kit Managers: Lawrence Kizito and Ayub Balyejusa

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