EGYPTIAN referee Essam Abdel Fatah will handle the Uganda â€” Nigeria Nations Cup qualifier return leg at Namboole June 2. The 32-year-old pilot will be assisted at the much-awaited do-or-die encounter by countrymen Abu El Ela Ahmeds and Degeash Ayman.
Fatah was at the centre of Australiaâ€™s 3-1 comeback defeat of Japan in the 2006 World Cup in Germany.
Fatah was replaced as referee at the last hour in the Uganda Kobs v South Africa 0-0 Olympic qualifier at Nakivubo in March. Countryman Ahmed Auda handled the match while Ayman officiated as the second assistant.
â€œWe hope we can get the best officiating from the referees because there is no way we can beat Nigeria if the officiating is not fair,â€ local federationâ€™s publicist Rogers Mulindwa prayed yesterday.
The federation fears a repeat of the first leg in Abeokuta where Senegalese referee Diara Badara controversially disallowed a would-be last minute Cranesâ€™ equaliser, condemning the Ugandans to a 1-0 defeat.
Hussein Bugembe will be the fourth official while Burundian Bernard Mfubusa is the match commissioner. The Cranes enter residential training at Namboole May 21.
CAF names refs for Cranes vs Nigeria