Micho dilemma with returnees, Chan stars
Posted Saturday, September 28 2013 at 01:00
KAMPALA- That a sizeable number of Ugandan hitherto foreign-based footballers are back in the country ready to play locally is no secret.
The open secret though is apart from either falling out with their respective clubs, running out of contracts or outright lack of regular club football, they have one big eye on next January’s Africa Nations Championships (Chan) in South Africa.
There, where Uganda face Zimbabwe, 2015 Afcon hosts Morocco and Burkina Faso in the group stage, they would be able to showcase what they’ve got, thus attracting potential suitors across the globe.
Those players include Cranes striker Emmanuel Okwi, who has fallen out contractually with his Tunisian club Etoile du Sahel, and defender Godfrey Walusimbi, who absconded from his DR Congo side Don Bosco. The pair are eying a move to SC Villa.
Others are midfielder Patrick Ochan and winger Mike Mutyaba, formerly at TP Mazembe, with the former already at KCC.
Former Vasco da Gama striker Geoffrey Sserunkuma is also at SCVU while Vietnam pair of Geoffrey Kizito and Moses Oloya are, too, close to completing switches.
The big concern
The concern is that given the aforementioned players’ experience, they could find themselves on the plane to South Africa at the expense of youngsters who helped Uganda qualify for the tournament.
Yet you would want them to get the exposure they want looking at Morocco 2015. Even Cranes coach Micho Sredojevic has no conclusive answer as to whether the returning players would be considered.
“To be honest that is something I don’t have a concrete answer to now,” Micho told Saturday Monitor.
“I want to use at least 50 per cent of what I consider future of Ugandan football and 10 per cent experience.
“Now with the returning players, of course they qualify to play for Uganda because they are Ugandans and Chan is for players playing and home.
“But we also know that future of Ugandan football must be encouraged. As I said, I can’t give you a final answer whether they (returning players) will play in Chan.
“We are going to sit as a technical team and the federation and see how what to do.”
Asked why he thought the players were returning, Micho was pensive. “Two things, maybe because they are not good enough there or contracts with their clubs have ended.
“But for me I believe in them and they are our reliable players. We are doing our best to help them play.”
Jan 2014: Africa Nations Championship