Uganda Cranes 1-0 URA FC
StarTimes Stadium, Lugogo
LUGOGO – The Uganda Cranes continued their preparations for CHAN 2020 qualifiers with a hard-fought victory over URA FC in a build-up game played at the StarTimes Stadium in Lugogo.
Vipers SC’s new forward Allan Kayiwa scored the game’s only goal in a game that was closely contested by the two sides.
Unlike a typical build-up or friendly game, the encounter was extremely physical in the opening exchanges.
On seven minutes, Yeseri Waybi took out Allan Kayiwa as URA FC ensured they let the Cranes know that they were taking the contest seriously.
The Cranes somehow took the lead on 12 minutes with Allan Kayiwa finding the back of the net off a left-footed strike from just inside the area.
URA were struggling to create chances with their first coming on 22 minutes after Mustafa Mujuzi’s attempted back pass was lashed onto by Brian Majwega but the former KCCA FC winger could not beat the on-rushing Yasin Mugabi.
On 30 minutes, both teams took a water break, much to the amusement of the on-lookers who are not used to the sort of stoppage.
With 10 minutes of the first half to play, Allan Kyambadde saw a fierce drive hit the inside of the post after good interplay with Patrick Kaddu and Andrew Kigozi.
At the other end, Mugabi denied Cromwel Rwothomio from point-blank after the forward cleanly connected with a Saidi Kyeyune corner.
Moments later, the former Paidha Black Angles’ striker headed wide another Kyeyune corner.
The Tax Collectors were enjoying their best spell in the first half and on 40 minutes, Kyeyune shot over from a glorious position following brilliant play down the left by Brian Majwega.
By the end of the first half, URA looked the better-placed side to score the next goal as the Cranes held on to their slim lead.
At the start of the second half, Abdallah Mubiru made 10 changes to his line up with only Disan Ggaliwango retaining his left-back spot.
Five minutes after the restart, Bright Anukani registered the first attempt on target in the second period but his curling effort was comfortably saved by Alionzi Naftan.
Three minutes after the hour mark, Nelson Ssenkatuka was sent on his way by Anukani but the forward sent his low effort off target and out for a goal kick.
Ssenkatuka later got another chance to add onto the Cranes tally but could not make his mind up, between trying to beat the defender and shoot after he was played in by the lively Anukani.
URA never looked like scoring in the second half as the Cranes saw out a slim 1-0 victory.
This was Abdallah Mubiru’s sides’ first build-up game as they prepare for the CHAN 2020 qualifiers against Somalia next week.
The team will now head into residential training before departing for Hoima where they will play a regional tour game against Kitara on Saturday afternoon.
Cranes first half XI
Yassin Mugabi (GK), Paul Willa, Disan Ggaliwango, John Revita, Mustapha Mujuzi, Tadeo Lwanga, Tom Matsiko, Allan Kyambadde, Allan Kayiwa, Patrick Kaddu, Andrew Kigozi.
Cranes second half XI
James Alitho, Ashraf Mandela, Disan Ggaliwango, Timothy Awanyi, Patrick Mbowa, David Aworo, Bright Anukani, Yussuf Ssozi, Dan Sserunkuma, Nelson Ssenkatuka, Johnson Odong.