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Cranes triumph 2-0

By Vision Reporter

Added 4th June 2011 03:00 AM

GOALS from Godfrey Walusimbi and Geoffrey Massa gave Uganda a 2-0 victory in a thrilling Nations Cup qualifier at Mandela National Stadium Saturday afternoon.

GOALS from Godfrey Walusimbi and Geoffrey Massa gave Uganda a 2-0 victory in a thrilling Nations Cup qualifier at Mandela National Stadium Saturday afternoon.

Uganda 2
Guinea Bissau 0

GOALS from Godfrey Walusimbi and Geoffrey Massa gave Uganda a 2-0 victory in a thrilling Nations Cup qualifier at Mandela National Stadium Saturday afternoon.

Walusimbi struck late in the first half, with Massa stretching the lead in the second half after a great pass by David Obua.

Victory for Uganda over Guinea Bissau takes them to 10 points in their group. Closest rivals Kenya and Angola play later in Luanda.

Angola plays Kenya on Sunday. Uganda top the group with 10 points, with one more game played. Kenya have four points while Guinea Bissau and Angola are at three points.

Starting line up: Onyango, Masaba, Kizito, Wasswa, Mwesigwa, Mawejje, Mudde, Walusimbi, Kayizzi, Massa and Obua.
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FRIDAY

WHEN Cranes confronted Guinea Bissau in a Nations Cup qualifier two months ago, few fancied them to win. They had after all never won a qualifying fixture away from home since 2000.

Fortunately Cranes plundered a 1-0 win but it must be said, that was against a Guinea Bissau side that rotated the ball around the pitch at bewildering, almost cruel pace.

Cranes were forced to look sluggish and lumbering, chasing haplessly as Guinea Bissau’s five-man midfield produced a breathtaking passing display that left many in admiration.

Today, when the two face-off again in what should be an intriguing fixture at Namboole Stadium, Cranes will be aware that victory will only be certain if they keep possession.

For Cranes to secure a momentous win, they will have to frustrate Guinea Bissau’s two most influential star players Jose Zezinho and Bocundji Ca. But then, how about the team’s two 6ft-plus strikers Cicero Semedo and Miche Diorusio?

Of course Guinea Bissau’s quality as a team goes far beyond just the abilities of four players —the whole team acts as a fluid force and their collective pressing is what makes them such a tricky side but it will be vital that Cranes restrict the four.

The question of how to deal with Zezinho, however, raises questions in more than one area of the pitch.

The misconception will be that the only way to stop Zezinho is to man-mark him with one designated player.

On the evidence of the first meeting between the two sides, it will be crucial to mark the space, rather than the man and this is where Tony Mawejje and Mudde Musa must step to the plate.

It’s certain that Williamson will go with a 4-4-1-1 formation, which will arguably offer the best of both worlds for the team.

Offensively, it will allow Obua to drop back and mark Bocundji — a vital role considering the way Bocundji sets Guinea Bissau’s tempo — and it would also mean that Massa will then push up and force the visitors to play deeper or offer a goal-threat on the break.

Williamson concedes that the task at hand for the 11 youthful cards he intends to roll out will be phenomenal; more so in the absence of suspended team captain Ibrahim Sekagya.

But such is the striking aspect of this Cranes side that each player, including Sekagya’s replacement Hassan Wasswa does not need reminding of the expectations at hand. “I am pleased with attitude and passion in the team. They all want to to do well,” Williamson stated.

If Cranes hand strikers Obua and Massa support, the two will work their magic, the sort of magic that helped Uganda get their away win in Bissau.

Williamson has asked his charges to compress the game, keep the tempo as high as possible, in the belief that it will expose their opponents’ frailties at the back. “If we can play the ball behind their midfield, we will get the result we need,” Massa pointed.

Probable Guinea Bissau line-up:

Nene, Macedo, Fernandez, Siha, Balde, Umpeca, Jose Zezinho, Diorusio, Bocundji, Semedo and Banjai.

Cranes triumph 2-0

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