The senior men’s national football team the Uganda Cranes are in action today as they face South Sudan in a belated African Cup of Nations Qualifiers match.The game had been originally slated for between 28th and 31st March of 2020,but had to be postponed after the global outbreak of the novel Coronavirus.
The derby between Uganda and it’s neighbours to the north will kick off at 4pm at the St.Mary’s Stadium in Kitende. Over the years,the two nation’s have locked horns a few times,in a variety of competitions ranging from friendlies to CECAFA Championships,to CHAN qualifiers.
Uganda Cranes remain unbeaten in clashes with their visitors,winning thrice and drawing twice since the first senior meeting between the two sides in 2012.
In the very first match,the two nations shared the spoils after goals from Ceasar Okhuti and Julius Ogwang were each cancelled out by Richard Justin and James Moga to give the world’s newest nation a credible point.
The second meeting wasn’t as close,as a first half Brian Umony brace was followed by strikes from Robert Ssentongo and Hamis Diego Kiiza to earn the Cranes a 4-0 win in the group stages of the 2012 CECAFA Cup.
A goalless draw followed in 2017,as the spirited hosts held Uganda in Juba,in the first leg of a 2018 CHAN Qualifier.
All the Bright Stars’ hardwork,was,however,undone in the second leg of that tie,as a Derrick Nsibambi opener was followed by an inspired Paul Mucureezi celebrating his national team debut with a memorable four goal haul,in a 5-1 demolition.A Khamis Leon Uso consolation provided miniscule respite for the visitors.
Uganda Cranes fans will be hoping this impressive record is maintained,while their South Sudanese counterparts will be hoping their team earns a maiden win in East Africa’s youngest derby.
Both sets of fans have one thing in common,though,the fact that neither will be present at St.Mary’s,as the ongoing coronavirus pandemic necessitates matches to be played behind closed doors.
Author: Timothy Ainebyoona
Timothy is a dynamic analyst passionate about news and all things sport.