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Football

Cranes juggernaut out to confront Zimbabwe

The Cranes defeated DR Congo 2-0 on Saturday to go top of Group A.

AFCON 2019
Uganda vs Zimbabwe
Cairo International Stadium, Cairo
Wednesday, 26-06-2019 @8pm

CAIRO – The Uganda Cranes will return to action on Wednesday afternoon when they take on Zimbabwe at the on-going AFCON 2019 finals.

Uganda is full of confidence after earning a convincing victory against DR Congo on Saturday, one that sees them sit top of Group A with three points from one game..

The 2-0 win over Congo was Uganda’s first at the event in over 41 years and it is one that has brightened the Cranes hopes of making it to the knockout stages of this year’s competition.

However, being in an unfamiliar situation may also lead to complacency and Cranes head coach Sebastien Desabre hopes his player put the Congo game behind them and focus on Zimbabwe.

“We are focused and concentrated for the Zimbabwe game on Wednesday, said Desabre in his pre-match press conference held on Tuesday.

“The win we got against DR Congo now means nothing.

“We need maximum points against Zimbabwe so that we head into the final game with Egypt when we are relaxed and already into the last 16.

“We respect Zimbabwe because they have very good individual players but we shall give it our best shot.”

Desabre speaking to the media on Tuesday.

Zimbabwe indeed have good individual players, the majority of whom play in the South African top flight.

Fourteen (14) of the 23 Warriors’ players currently in Egypt, play in the Premier Soccer League (PSL), the same league Uganda’s captain Denis Onyango features in.

“Personally, i will admit that i know most of the Zimbabwe players, noted Onyango when asked about the Warriors.

“I have played with some of them in the same clubs and majority play in the PSL.

“However, we are set and determined to face Zimbabwe. There is no need to underrate them because they have quality.”

Talking of quality, Zimbabwe showed loads of it as they lost their opening game 0-1 to hosts Egypt.

Zimbabwe lost 0-1 to Egypt in their AFCON opener last Friday.

The likes of Marshall Munetsi, Knowledge Musona and Khama Billiat were a constant menace to the Pharaohs as they bid to upset the odds.

It was not to be in the end but they will be hoping to get back into the running for a knockout spot against Uganda.

“We play against a very good side which defeated DR Congo and i think we have to fight hard for the entire game. Said Zimbabwe head coach Sunday Chidzambwa ahead of Wednesday’s clash.

“I hope we will be at our best to get a good result that will revive our hopes.

“Against Egypt, we did not have many chances but we will try to do better this time round.

“We are not here to add numbers but we are here to compete.”

This will be the 5th meeting between the two sides since 2011.

In the other four match-ups, each has won one and drawn the other two.

The last meeting between the two sides saw Zimbabwe defeat Uganda 2-0 in an international friendly back in May 2016.

The other group A game sees second placed Egypt take on DR Congo at the same venue on the same day at 11pm.

Uganda’s probable line up

Desabre will be expected to maintain the same line up that defeated Congo on Saturday.

The only concern ahead of Tuesday’s game has been Swedish based forward Abdu Lumala who was stretchered off in the 2-0 victory but news coming from Egypt suggests that he is fit to start.

Denis Onyango (GK), Bevis Mugabi, Godfrey Walusimbi, Murushid Juuko, Hassan Wasswa, Khalid Aucho, Mike Azira, Farouk Miya, Emmanuel Okwi, Abdu Lumala, Patrick Kaddu.

The other games on Tuesday

-Nigeria vs Guinea @5:30pm
-Egypt vs DR Congo @11pm

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