Thursday, September 7
•Niger Vs Uganda – 10pm
•Algeria Vs Tanzania – 10pm
- Algeria (Q) – 15pts
- Tanzania – 7
- Uganda – 4
- Niger (E) – 2
Uganda Cranes will go all out for maximum points against Niger in their last group F game of the 2023 AFCON qualifiers at the Stade de Marrakesh in Morocco.
The Cranes will however have their ears in Algeria as well, as the hosts face off with Tanzania in the other Group game at the same time.
To qualify for AFCON due next year in Ivory Coast, Uganda must beat Niger and pray that Tanzania fall to leaders Algeria.
And let’s first leave the calculations at that.
It has been a poor campaign for the Cranes, who hosted their last two group games away from home.
But all this can easily be forgotten and swept below the carpet if the Cranes secure a ticket to AFCON for the first time since 2019.
But the Cranes must do it without captain Emmanuel Okwi who got injured on club duty.
And the scoring burden will be carried by Rogers Mato, Fahad Bayo, Richard Basangwa and Frank Ssebuufu, the former scored a winner in Dar Es Salaam against Tanzania in what is only Uganda’s win in the group.
It’s strong to note that Uganda Cranes played a 1-1 draw with Niger at Kitende in the first meeting on June 8, 2022.
The Cranes were on course to pick maximum points after going ahead through Milton Karisa.
But Mahamadou Amadou Sabo leveled it for the visitors in the 71st minute to silence Kitende.
Niger who can no longer go through the group, picked two draws against Tanzania and Uganda in their opening two group games.
They have since lost their three subsequent games, including failing to score on the last two.
And the side might need to finish the campaign on a promising note as they prepare to switch focus on the World Cup Qualifiers.
Niger have called up an experienced squad to face Uganda Cranes with Mahamadou Djibo, Ousmane Diabate and Boubacar Abdoul Magid included.
Algeria sealed a ticket to AFCON after four games, and have proved head and shoulders above everyone in the group as the side sit atop with 15 points.
Two teams go through from the group, and that remaining slot can only be occupied by either Tanzania or Uganda who have seven and four points respectively.
Uganda must beat Niger, and Tanzania must lose against Algeria, for the Cranes to go through.
This means that Uganda Cranes, currently third on four points, will move to seven points level with Tanzania.
The first classification considered is head to head, which is equal – Uganda lost 1-0 to Tanzania in Egypt before winning by the same scoreline in Dar Es Salaam.
Uganda have a -3 goal difference, and a 1-0 win for example will send them to -2.
Tanzania’s goal difference is -1, and a loss, say 0-1, will set their goal difference to -2.
Then, classifications will go down to which team has scored more goals.
Both Uganda and Tanzania have scored 3 goals, but if results end 1-0 win for Uganda and 0-1 loss for Tanzania, the Cranes’ goal scored column increases to 4. And hence goes through on goals scored!
The only way a Uganda-win plus Tanzania-loss is not enough to send the Cranes through, is when the Taifa Stars score more goals than Cranes on the night!
If Cranes win 1-0, and Tanzania lose 2-1, the latter goes through having scored more goals!
Uganda Cranes Probable XI – Salim Jamal, Elvis Bwomono, Aziz Kayondo, Bevis Mugabi, Halid Lwaliwa, Khalid Aucho, Bobosi Byaruhanga, Farouk Miya, Rogers Mato, Fahad Bayo, Milton Karisa
How To Watch – The game will be broadcast live on Sanyuka Prime and FUFA TV for those watching on local channels.
Sports Premium (on StarTimes), Select 2 (Gotv) and Super Sport Variety 4 and Super Sport Maximo 3 both on Dstv will have the game.