Tanzania’s Taifa Stars have qualified for the 2019 Total Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) after a convincing 3-0 win over Uganda Cranes in a Group L game qualifying game played in Dar el Salaam on Sunday.
Although the Uganda Cranes had already qualified, coach Sebastien Desabre’s side where hungry to remain unbeaten in the qualifiers.
But the hosts cheered on by over 40,000 fans at the National Stadium made it count scoring through Simon Nsuva after 21 minutes before Edward Erasto Nyoni converted a second half penalty and Aggrey Morris made it 3-0.
It was a poor day in office for most Cranes players including Emmanuel Okwi, Chrizistom Ntambi and Farouk Miya. Coach Desabre decided to rest usual starters Khalid Aucho and Murushid Juuko, while Hassan Wasswa Mawanda was suspended with two yellow cards.
It was all celebration after the final whistle as the football crazy Tanzanian celebrated the win and qualification for Afcon.
Leodegar Tenga who captained Taifa Stars at the 1980 Afcon said he was proud of the team making it back to Afcon. “This is a great day for Tanzanian football and it is a great feeling seeing our national team going back for Afcon,” said Tenga, who is an executive member of the Confederation of African Football (CAF).
The win against Uganda took Tanzania to 8 points. In the second Group L game , Cape Verde and Lesotho drew 0-0. Uganda topped the group with 13 points, while Tanzania came second with 8 points and Lesotho 6, while better ranked Cape Verde was bottom with 5 points.
Tanzania became the fourth team from the CECAFA region to qualify for for 2019 Afcon after Uganda, Kenya and Burundi who qualified on Saturday for the first time.