THE talk has been done, promises been made and all that is left is for the home-based Cranes outfit to emulate their predecessors by qualifying
By Fred Kaweesi
THE 2014 Africa Nations Championship return leg is finally upon us.
The talk has been done, promises been made and all that is left is for the home-based Cranes outfit to emulate their predecessors by qualifying for the finals in South Africa next year.
Coach Micho Sredejovic’s side need just to protect their 1-0 first leg win by snatching either another victory or secure a draw at Namboole Stadium to guarantee progress.
Below, I look at how both teams compare ahead of the historic fixture.
Hamza Muwonge (Vipers) v Juma Kaseja (Simba)
These two share a lot in common. They have the same size, appearance and are quite similar in their approach to the game.
All that Tanzania’s first choice Juma Kaseja can do within the goal area, his Ugandan compatriot Muwonge can and maybe even better.
Nicholas Wadada (Vipers) v David Ruhende (Yanga)
With Wadada at right-back, Vipers have often looked settled and organised.
He exudes confidence on the ball and good ball possession. He attacks and often recovers well.
On the other side, Ruhende is a hard tackler that occasionally supplements his team’s attack from the wide areas.
Habib Kavuma (KCCA FC) v Erasto Nyoni (Azam FC)
He returns from suspension and will offer Cranes defensive solidity. He has reasonable experience.
On the other end, Nyoni is a versatile player with ability to operate in a number of positions.
He has operated in midfield, central defence and at both left and right fullback positions.
Richard Kasagga (Kiira FC) v Aggrey Morris (Azam)
Kasagga had an impressive debut during the first leg in Dar es Salaam.
He frustrated Tanzania’s gangly striker John Bocco with good game reading and authority in the air.
On the other hand, Morris, Tanzania’s 2011/12 Footballer of the Year and Vodacom League Player of the season, is physically solid. He has a high level of concentration and is good in the air.
Savio Kabugo (SCVU) v Kevin Yondan (Yanga)
There are fitness concerns around this lad following an ankle injury he suffered in training.
If he does start, he is expected to perform better than his nervous first half display in Dar es Salaam.
He has good game reading.
On the other hand, Yondan has gathered experience playing for the national side over the years. He is also solid.
Hassan Wasswa (KCCA FC) v Frank Damayo (JKT Ruvu)
A few months back, Wasswa had some fitness concerns but has since improved.
Sometimes the ball goes past him. Sometimes a striker goes past him. But rarely do the two go past at the same time.
Damayo is a workaholic. He shields the back-four well and his passing is not bad either.
Denis Iguma (SCVU) v Idd Athuman Chuji (Yanga)
Iguma surprised many by starting in an attacking role and scoring from one of his adventures upfront.
He will certainly retain this role and offer Cranes some defensive cover when need be.
At the other end, Chuji is tailor-made to be a holding mid¬fielder that shields the back-four.
However, he can also serve in an advanced role.
He has good vision and passing.
Said Kyeyune (URA FC) v Salum Abubaker (Azam)
Kyeyune is a brilliant dribbler. He is well capable of exposing any full back with pace and trickery on the ball.
He is one of the best youth products at Azam. He is two-footed and has been praised for his incisive passing.
Brian Majwega (KCCA FC) v Mrisho Ngassa (Simba)
Majwega was a gamble at left-back in Dar es Salaam and yet he still managed to leave an everlasting impression among Tanzanian fans.
His brilliant movement from a defensive position, telepathic understanding with Said Kyeyune, great vision and simple approach were extraordinary and a problem for Kapombe.
At the other end, Ngassa’s boundless energy, trickery and efficient use of the ball mark him out as a star in the making.
His box of tricks has confounded many fine right-backs.
Frank Kalanda (URA FC) v John Bocco (Azam)
Kalanda has limited experience on the international front. There are several aspects about his game that need to improve but could surprise many if he holds his nerve.
At the opposite end, Bocco, who top scored in the Tanzanian Vodacom Premier League with 19 goals, is a giant that thrives on physical presence.
He positions and runs through the channels brilliantly.
Joseph Mpande (Vipers) v Amri Kiemba (Simba)
Mpande has plenty of potential in him. He can offer a perfect link between the attacking mid¬fielder and main striker up front and switches well in support of the two wide players.
On the other side, Kiemba is one of East Africa’s best box-to-box midfielders.
Kiemba starts in the deep midfield areas but has popped up with devastating effect behind main striker Bocco, with a number of vital goals over the years.
He is so elusive.
Uganda vs Tanzania: Key match ups