By Swalley Kenyi
Africa Nations Championships
Uganda v Burkina Faso
Zimbabwe v Uganda
Morocco v Uganda
UGANDA Cranes coach Micho Sredejovic has named a preliminary squad of 29 mainly junior players for the forthcoming Africa Nations Championships (CHAN) finals due in South Africa next year.
Other than professional players and home based Ibrahim Kiiza, all the others who featured in the just concluded CECAFA Senior Challenge Cup, are named on the squad that is expected to start training at Namboole on Friday morning.
It will be trimmed to 18 players before departure for the championship scheduled for January 11 to February 1.
By press time, the squad was yet to be endorsed by Micho who spoke on phone to New Vision Sport but declined to confirm the development.
But he insisted that the squad had the best of players for Uganda to achieve at the continental competition this time round.
“I can’t tell you what the squad is because FUFA yet to approve it. All I can say is that the squad is expected to start training at Namboole tomorrow (Friday) morning,” Micho said.
Recently Micho appealed to FUFA to have the Cranes play regular international friendly matches as a way of getting the team fully prepared for the Africa Nations Championship finals and Africa Nations Cup qualifiers later next year.
"We (Uganda) need to work on competitions. We compete with the best teams in Africa and the world so we need to compete week in week out like our opponents. Uganda exports the biggest number of players to join professional ranks," Micho said.
But according to a source on the FUFA executive committee, a meeting that among other issues discussed the Cranes preparations on Thursday dismissed all international friendly matches and residential training sessions that Micho had proposed to the federation for financial reasons.
The Uganda Cranes who are placed in Group B together with Burkina Faso, Morocco and Zimbabwe will be making their second successive appearance at the championship but the first one under the guidance of Micho.
In the first edition of CHAN in Khartoum in 2012, Uganda was eliminated at the group stages.
The Squad: Benjamin Ochan, Ismael Watenga, F. Oringa, Savio Kabugo, Nicholas Wadada, M. Mpuuga, R. Aloro, I. Kazibwe, S. Namwanja, Deniis Guma, Isaac Muleme, I. Ntege, Ayub Kisaalita, Richard Kasagga, J.Ntambi, Y.Mugerwa, Brian Majwega, Simon Okwi, Joseph Mpande, Said Kyeyune, Oscar Agaba, Vincent Kayizzi, R. Kisekka, Tom Masiko, A.Kyambadde, E.Ssentamu, C. Asiku, U. Kasumba, Francis Olaki