Cranes aim for perfection

Monday December 9 2019

Joy.  Anukani (c) celebrates his goal with

Joy. Anukani (c) celebrates his goal with teammates Ben Ocen (L) and Fahad Bayo. PHOTO BY EDDIE CHICCO 

By Elvis Senono

The Cranes play their second game at the 2019 Cecafa Championship this evening looking for maximum points to maintain their unbeaten start to the tournament.
The Johnathan McKinstry coached-side opened their quest fora 15th Cecafa crown with a 2-1 win over Burundi on Saturday.
Apart from seeking three points at the StarTimes Stadium, they will target more efficiency having wasted several goal scoring opportunities before withstanding late pressure from Burundi to see out the result.

“We were very much pleased with the first half and our players were implementing what we practiced. In the second half one or two players strayed a bit so it wasn’t as smooth. But the second half we knew Burundi would be aggressive but apart from the penalty and the chance that flashed across goal late in the game they did not create much,” McKinstry said of the Cranes opening game.
McKinstry experimented with a surprising ball-friendly midfield of Shafik Kagimu as the anchorman as well as Allan Okello and Bright Anukani with Ben Ochen, Vianney Ssekajugo and livewire Fahad Bayo as the front three.

Johnathan McKinstry
Johnathan McKinstry

What followed was one of the best displays any Cranes team has ever conjured up in the opening 45 minutes over the past decade.
Playing two number 10’s in Anukani and Okello was already doing the magic and the former played an inch-perfect ball for Bayo who finished confidently past his Vipers teammate for a 2-0 scoreline.

Thrill. The always Bright Anukani released Fahad Bayo who appeared to time his run to perfection as replays showed, but his side-foot-volleyed finish was incorrectly ruled out for offside inside the opening five minutes. Anukani then took matters into his own hands drilling a low drive past the familiar dive of Vipers goalkeeper Fabien Mutombora in Burundi’s goal in the ninth minute.