2018 WC Q – Uganda eyes another friendly with Senegal ahead of Congo clash

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Kampala — It has emerged that Senegal is among three countries that Fufa have sought to face Uganda Cranes here in an international friendly next month.

Daily Monitor has learnt that the Lions of Teranga are the football federation’s preferred visitors prior to the 2018 World Cup qualifying game against Congo Brazzaville at Namboole.

Such a game would happen in the days leading up to the November 12 clash on match-day two of the six-game group E qualification campaign.

The national team picked a commendable goalless draw away in Ghana on Friday as Egypt beat Congo Brazzaville 2-1 in the other group E game played Sunday.

Before the Ghana game, The Cranes had played and lost a similar friendly to Togo in Lome but it proved vital for the Ugandans who run away with a crucial point at Tamale.

Fufa publicist Ahmed Hussein could neither deny or confirm if the 2002 World Cup finalists, who qualified for the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations with a perfect record were coming. “Because of the finances involved, we have to look at the schedules of the teams that will be playing that weekend before we zero in on any,” Hussein said.

Besides Senegal, a source told this newspaper that Fufa have also contacted Burkina Faso and Zambia. The cordial relationship with the latter could also come into play. “We have spoken to our Zambian friends. They told us that an Afcon campaign would cost us and they advised to have at least US$2m,” Fufa boss Moses Magogo told the media last month. “We have sought advise from them on a cross-section of things.”

Those travel schedules tilt the equation heavily in favour of Senegal. On match-day two, the West Africans, who beat Cape Verde 2-0 on Saturday, will travel to South Africa for a group D tie.

Burkina Faso, also in the same group, make the ‘short trip’ across the Atlantic ocean to Cape Verde islands.

Zambia, beaten 2-1 at home by Nigeria, are Cameroon-bound next month. “Our target is to have a team that can go through here then we provide something for them,” Hussein added.

Also, Magogo and Uganda Cranes coach Micho Sredojevic last month promised to host one of the 15 Nations’ Cup bound sides for a friendly before facing Congo Brazzaville.

“We plan to bring one of teams we might meet in Gabon here in November,” Micho said then. Such a plan would knock out former African champions Zambia who didn’t qualify. Uganda last played Senegal in the 2014 World Cup qualifiers, drawing 1-all here before losing 1-0 in Morocco with Liverpool’s Sadio Mane getting the goal.

2018 WORLD CUP QUALIFIERS

NOVEMBER 12

Uganda vs. Congo Brazzaville

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