18 new faces as Hippos start maiden Afcon preps

Thursday January 21 2021
soccer02pix

KCCA FC’s Ssenyonjo

By Elvis Senono

ELVIS SENONO
The  national Under-20 team - Hippos – qualified for a first ever Africa Cup of Nations appearance after a successful Cecafa event in December 2020. 

The Hippos defeated hosts Tanzania 4-1 with both nations qualifying for the finals tournament that will be hosted in Mauritania starting February 14–4 March 2021.

The 20 players that featured at that Cecafa tournament have now all been summoned as part of a 38-man provisional squad to start preparations.

They are joined by 18 new faces with whom they will vie for slots on the final team. Among the new faces are Police forward Derrick Kakooza and Sam Senyonjo, the latter who scored five goals from as many league games for KCCA.

They will add competition to an attacking line that was led by Ivan Bogere who top scored at the Cecafa tournament with five goals.

The provisional list also includes two UK-based youngsters Samuel Moses Kitaka (Loughborough University) and Nathan Odokonyero (Lincoln City).

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The team that will again have Morley Byekwaso as head coach includes five players who were part of the national Under-17 team Cubs that managed the country’s first ever Afcon Under-17 appearance.

The five are captain Gavin Kizito Mugweri, goalkeeper Jack Komakech, Najib Yiga, Ivan Asaba and Isma Mugulusi.

Bobosi Byaruhanga and Abdul Aziizi Kayondo are meanwhile not yet part of the squad as they are currently on duty with the Uganda Cranes Chan team in Cameroon.

The team reported to camp yesterday at the Cranes Paradise Hotel in Kisasi and are expected to start training at the MTN Omondi Stadium this evening.

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