Najib Yiga broke out as part of the national under-17 team Cubs that won the Central-East Zone qualifier and reach the 2019 Africa U-17 Cup of Nations.
The left footed attacker scored four goals at the tournament impressing alongside Davis Sekajja, then Onduaparaka JT striker Idd, Isma Mugulusi and Gavin Kizito.
Apart from Mugulusi and Kizito who have gone on to shine for Busoga United and SC Villa respectively, the majority of that title winning team appear to have gone off the boil.
This year’s Cecafa Championship that features under-23 and three over age players however provided another opportunity to showcase their ability on a regional scale.
This followed Fufa’s decision to elevate many of the players from the under-20 team Hippos that reached the Afcon under-20 final March.
Grasping the opportunity
Yiga, who has also struggled for playing time at Vipers, appears to have grasped the opportunity with both hands.
He is one of the few positives that can be singled out as the Kobs failed to defend the Cecafa crown that concludes over the weekend.
They eventually finished fifth after winning their two classification games edging DR Congo 1-0.
They followed it up yesterday with a 2-1 triumph over Eritrea at the at the Bahir Dar Stadium, Ethiopia.
Strength. On the Yiga played a prominent role, scoring in both games having started on the bench in the opening goalless draw against DR Congo.
He impressed in that cameo role proving a threat with his dribbling and crosses in addition to providing width on the left side of midfield. While he was unable to help the Kobs reach the semifinals in a 1-1 draw with Tanzania, he scored the game’s only goal against DR Congo after good interplay with Steven Mukwala.