Attack or defend? Before stepping out at Namboole, Cranes will have to have decided on the appropriate approach, because this certainly promises to be a game of chess.
BY Fred Kaweesi
World Cup qualifiers
Preliminary Competition Africa Zone-Round 2 , 2nd leg
Uganda (1) v Togo (0)
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Nelson Mandela National Stadium
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Cranes’World Cup qualifying win over Togo in Lome on Thursday was Uganda’s finest display away from home by a mile.
The team had more bite, showed more application, played at a higher tempo and displayed more spirit than in any of the previous assignments on foreign territory.
The 1-0 win presented Cranes with something to build on marching into the return fixture at Namboole Stadium. But it’s what happens today that’s more important.
Uganda Cranes that played Togo on Thursday. Photo by www.fufa.co.ug
It’s what happens against the wounded Sparrow Hawks that will ultimately decide whether Uganda will be in the group stages of the World Cup qualifiers.
But if you were the coach in charge, how would you handle a game like this? Of course, the ordinary fans will say; defend and protect their first leg result to guarantee progress. But the reality is, today’s return fixture presents a complex situation for the Cranes.
In the build-up to this game, Cranes coach Micho Sredojevic must have spent time thinking; now that we have the advantage, should we simply defend and see out the game? Or simply attack and attack for that killer punch?
How about playing cautiously and waiting patiently for a sporadic counter-attack?
Before stepping out at Namboole, Cranes will have to have decided on the appropriate approach, because this certainly promises to be a game of chess.
The Cranes will have to remain cool and calculated as an early goal for Togo could ultimately tilt this fixture. They will have to control the game and make Togo work.
While teamwork is such a significant component for any successful football side, individual contributions can at times prove exceptionally precious as Cranes have fast-discovered in recent times.
Dennis Onyango will prove decisive, just as the back-four of Denis Iguma, GodfreyWalusimbi (if he starts), Isaac Isinde and Murushid Juuko.
MICHO: I know my first 11 but I need player Number 12. So Ugandans come to Namboole to show Togo Africa's hardest place to visit @michocoach— The SUNDAY Vision UG (@newvisionwire) November 15, 2015
The Cranes will play an attacking game, applying consistent pressure on the visitors with speed and power up the middle through central midfielder Tony Mawejje and lead striker Geoffrey Massa.
A goalless draw or any Cranes win will guarantee Uganda a place in the group stages of the World Cup qualifiers.
D.Onyango, D.Iguma, G.Walusimbi, I.Isinde, M.Juuko, K.Aucho, M.Oloya, T.Mawejje, G.Massa, C.Okhuti, J.Ochaya
Micho faces game of chess versus Togo