By Fred Kaweesi
GEOFFREY Massa will not be available for Uganda’s high-profile friendly against Zambia at the Levy Mwanawasa Stadium on Wednesday.
The 27-year-old is still struggling with an injury and has been advised by his club to resume training on Wednesday.
“I will not be fit for the friendly. I was suspended over the weekend but even then still had an injury that would have ruled me out. The club already communicated to FUFA,” Massa, who turns out for South Africa club University of Pretoria, told New Vision on Monday.
In a communication to FUFA, the University of Pretoria team manager Graham Oosthuis stated that: “Geoffrey sustained a Grade 1 strain of his left Rectus Femoris muscle during a game on the 22nd of February. He is currently undergoing treatment.”
As of today, it was still not clear as to whether Emmanuel Okwi and Hamis Kiiza would make the trip to Ndola.
The two strikers, who turn out for Tanzanian giants Yanga, were by press time still expected in Zambia after processing their travel visas to Cairo ahead of their club’s CAF Champions League return leg against Egyptian side Al Ahly.
“I am still speaking to Yanga and will not give up,” Cranes coach Micho Sredojevic stated earlier on Sunday before calling up Soana striker Francis Olaki and Brian Umony, who turns out for Tanzanian side Azam.
The two will compete with Gor Mahia’s Dan Sserunkuma for a starting place. Tony Mawejje and Henry Kalungi are out of the game after failing to secure their travel documents on time.
In the absence of Mawejje, Micho will stick with the Aucho Khalid-Geoffrey Kizito midfield partnership that started during the CECAFA Challenge Cup in Kenya last year.
Why drop Ssentamu?
But questions will be asked as to why Africa Nations Championship (CHAN) star striker Yunus Ssentamu was ignored for the mid-week friendly.
Sentamu’s three goals in the tournament held in South Africa in January were top-notch and there was enough to suggest that the Vipers striker could push for a first team place in the senior Cranes side.
Zambia coach Patrice Beaumelle has included 16 foreign-based players in his squad.
Stoppilla Sunzu, Nathan Sinkala, Emmanuel Mayuka (all Sochaux) and Rainford Kalaba are some of their prominent stars.