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Uganda kings of CECAFA U-17 qualifiers

Uganda U-17 team won the CECAFA AFCON qualifiers in Dar es Salam, Tanzania and are now qualified for next year's AFCON, a first in their history. Furthermore, would they have good results at the AFCON, they could even qualify for the big event of the category, the FIFA U-17 World Cup, held in Peru in October 2019. Let us review the tournament !

Fans at the CECAFA U-17 AFCON qualifiers in Dar es Salam, Tanzania

In the long perspective of FIFA U-17 World Cup in Peru in October 2019, Uganda made a first important step in Tanzania. The Cubs won the qualifiers for the U-17 AFCON in the CECAFA zone, and will therefore represent the East Zone at the AFCON next year in May.

The journey to the victory has not been extremely easy for Uganda, who started with a defeat against Ethiopia in the group stage (1-0). But after trashing South Sudan 6-1 including a quadruple by Ssekajja, they beat their main rival for the 2nd place, Kenya, in an epic game (3-1), with a magnificent strike by Asaba to seal the score:

Following this win, it was a formality for the Ugandese team to beat Djibouti (8-0) and qualify for the semi-finals. And against the hosts, once again, the match has been very tight. Despite Uganda opening the score very early (5’), the Taifa Stars came back before the first quarter on an extraordinary “Olympic” goal by Mshirakandi:

And it is only a bit more than 10 minutes before final whistle that Uganda finally took the advantage (2-1, 77’) and ensured their qualification for the final with a bit of luck (3-1, 90’+2).

On the other side of the brackets, Ethiopia struggled a lot to beat Rwanda in the other semi-final. The young Rwandese came on the pitch with a lot of ambitions, as stated by their coach, Yves Rwasamanzi: "we will seek to score early in the game, but also ensure our defence doesn’t cause us troubles. Every detail in such a game counts, after all it could be the only thing making a difference given the preparedness of the opponents.We want to reach the final, and qualify for the AFCON finals next year".

And as planed by Rwasamanzi, the game was decided on details : after a thrilling 2-2, the two teams had to go through penalties shoot-out. And Alazar Markos Malko, the Ethiopian goalie, showed his nerves by saving the fourth attempt of Rwanda and sending his mates to the final:

A final which was no less than the replay of the opening game between the two teams, which Ethiopia had won 1-0. But History does not always repeat and this time Uganda controlled the game practically from start till the end. They won the title with a convincing victory (3-1), sealing the score with this brilliant team goal which summarizes well the spirit of this team:

With this triumph, the Uganda U-17 team not only qualifies for the first time for the U-17 AFCON taking place in may 2019, but also gives itself a chance to reach the World Cup of the category... "We are champions and it is not yet over. We shall continue to work hard and harder", confirmed the captain, Gavin Kizito Mugweri, after the final.

"We have been strong since the second game in the tournament. We have revenged against the Ethiopians and i am very proud with the boys. They have been so determined and followed whatever we planned", considered Peter Onen, the coach.

Follow the other U-17 AFCON regional qualifiers on mycujoo

  

All results and matches on-demand :

Group A

Rwanda 3–1 Sudan
Tanzania 2–1 Burundi
Burundi 3–4 Rwanda
Sudan 0–5 Tanzania
Burundi 4–2 Sudan
Rwanda 0–4 Tanzania

Group B

South Sudan 2–1 Djibouti
Uganda 0–1 Ethiopia
Kenya 4–0 South Sudan
Djibouti 0–4 Ethiopia
South Sudan 1–6 Uganda
Djibouti 0–9 Kenya
Ethiopia 5–1 South Sudan
Kenya 1–3 Uganda
Uganda 8–0 Djibouti
Ethiopia 4–2 Kenya

Semi finals

Ethiopia 2–2 (4-2 PSO) Rwanda
Tanzania 1–3 Uganda

Third place match

Tanzania 2–2 (4-3 PSO) Rwanda

Final

Uganda 3–1 Ethiopia