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What a draw against Mali means to Uganda Cranes’ FIFA World Cup dream

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Uganda Cranes’ 2022 Qatar FIFA World Cup dream could be cut short with another draw against Mali at an early stage of the qualifiers.

The Cranes played to a goal-less draw with the West African giants at the St. Mary’s Stadium in Kitende this evening.

This becomes the second draw of the campaign out of two attempts , following another goalless draw with arch rivals Kenya at Nyayo Stadium in Nairobi last Thursday.

There was too much dominance by the visitors Mali who looked a better side for victory despite being denied by a solid Cranes defence at the receiving ends supplemented by good goalkeeping in Ismael Watenga.

The Cranes finished the game with a man less after defender Murushid Juuko’s red card in 65th minute for elbowing Ibrahima Kone after his first yellow in the 30th minute for fouling the same Ibrahima Kone.

How it stands now.

Mali are currently the leaders of the Group (E) with four points as Kenya and Uganda follow with two points each. Rwanda occupies the bottom with one point.

Uganda is currently third on table due to disciplinary accounts associated to cards accumulated and goals scored.

Uganda Cranes’ next outing will be a double header tie against neighbors Rwanda in the October International break window.

This fixture can closely draw the memories of many Ugandans to the dramatic 1-0 loss to Rwanda in 2004, thanks to a Jimmy Gatete goal in a two in one qualifier campaign of CAF Nations cup and 2006 World Cup.

What next

It looks absolutely hard for Uganda to make it to the next round just after two games played.

Uganda’s opponent seem to be easy but hard fixtures to hold under pressure time with too much mathematics involved.

Uganda must win their next double header against Rwanda as they pray the double tie between Kenya and Mali end in stalemates to bounce back to realistic chances.

The last campaign tie against Kenya will be another bloody and memory reverting event with Ugandans drawing much reflection onto the 2009 CAF Nations heartbreaking 0-0 result against neighbors.

Today’s team lists.

Uganda Cranes XI; Isima Watenga, Denis Iguma, Isaac Muleme, Enock Walusimbi, Murushid Juuko, Khalid Aucho, Bobosi Byaruhanga, Milton Karisa, Emmanuel Okwi ©, Derrick Nsibambi, Joseph Ochaya

Subs: Charles Lukwago, Joel Mutakubwa, Innocent Wafula, Gavin Kizito Mugweri, Aziizi Kayondo, Ibrahim Orit, Richard Basangwa, Steven Mukwala, Yunus Sentamu, Mustafa Kizza, Moses Waiswa, Kenneth Semakula

Mali XI; Bosso Mounkoro, Kiki Kouyate, Falaye Sacko, Charles Traore, Hamari Traore, Mohamed Camara, Diadie Samassekou, Amadou Haidara, Adama Traore. Malouda, Moussa Doumbia, Ibrahima Kone.

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