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Bobby hopeful on cranes chances

By Vision Reporter

Added 21st February 2010 03:00 AM

BOBBY Williamson does not intend to make wholesome changes to the senior Cranes team that competed in the 2010 World/Nations Cup qualifiers.

BOBBY Williamson does not intend to make wholesome changes to the senior Cranes team that competed in the 2010 World/Nations Cup qualifiers.

By Fred Kaweesi

International friendly
March 3
Tanzania v Uganda
CHAN
March 12
Burundi v Uganda

BOBBY Williamson does not intend to make wholesome changes to the senior Cranes team that competed in the 2010 World/Nations Cup qualifiers.

But the Scottish coach has challenged Cranes’ locally-based players to strive and play their way into his 2012 Orange Nations Cup qualifying side with resolute performances in the Africa Nations Championship.

Williamson will inevitably make changes if the youngsters impress in the Nations Championship qualifiers that start with an away engagement against Burundi on March 12.

“I believe in my local players. The CHAN tournament will present each with a chance of breaking into the senior team. It’s a challenge for all,” Williamson stated yesterday.

Uganda was handed a tricky group for 2012 tournament after the Cranes were placed in Group 10, alongside their former 2010 World Cup qualifying opponents Angola, regional rivals Kenya and Guinea-Bissau.

Forty-four teams were drawn into 11 groups of four teams each and will play each other on a round-robin basis. The winners of each group will qualify for the finals as well as the three best second-placed teams.

Co-hosts Equatorial Guinea and Gabon qualify automatically for the tournament.

Uganda’s enduring love affair with the African Nations Cup has been a roller-coaster of pure agony since 1978, with the intervening years authoring a series of near-misses and abject failures.

Williamson however feels the side he will dispatch in the qualifiers that start in September will have quality enough to make-up for the devastating run in previous major qualifiers.

For the third consecutive edition, Uganda avoided North African opposition and contrary to the two previous qualifying tournaments, the Cranes will have to deal with just one West African Guinea-Bissau, 195 in the FIFA rankings.

That said engaging Angola and Kenya might not be a good omen for Uganda.

During the 2010 World/Nations Cup qualifiers, the Cranes humiliated Angola 3-1 before frustrating them with a goalless result in Luanda. These are damning statistics that Angola will want to improve.

Uganda-Kenya will be derby games, whose destiny will not be particularly decided on football grounds.

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Group 10: Uganda, Angola, Kenya, Guinea-Bissau

What Bobby says about the Cranes opponents?
Angola
“I watched them in the Nations Cup but I will need to carefully watch a few of their previous games on video to understand much about them.
“From what I know, they will be difficult opponents.”

Kenya
“We have beaten them home and away in our two previous meetings in the CECAFA (1-0 in the final and 1-0 in the CECAFA quarter-finals in Nairobi), so we will have that psychological advantage over them”

Guinea-Bissau
“I have no idea of what to expect from them because I have never watched them before. Hopefully, I will identify a few of their videos before our first meeting.”

Bobby hopeful on cranes chances

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