A 24-man squad has today morning departed for Sudan ahead of the CECAFA AFCON U20 Zonal qualifiers slated for the 28th of October to the 11th of November.
The team which will be captained by Isma Mugulusi consists of three goalkeepers, eight defenders, eight midfielders and five forwards.
Only three players from the side that lost to Ghana in the AFCON U20 final, last year, are part of the team. These include the captain Mugulusi, KCCA FC midfielders Faisal Wabyoona and URA FC goalkeeper Denis Ssenyonda.
After the Hippos’ brilliant adventure in the 2020 championships in Mauritania, a lot will be expected from the current squad.
Changes have been made to the technical team with former Uganda Cranes star, Jackson Mayanja taking over from Morley Byekwaso.
At the competition, Uganda is in group B alongside Tanzania and Ethiopia. The Hippos first game will be against Tanzania at the Al Hilal stadium on Saturday.
The team will then have a six-day rest before taking on Ethiopia in their final group game on the 5th of November.
Mayanja’s side has held a 13-day residential camp as part of the preparations for the regional competition which is a pathway to the continental showpiece.
As evident from the 2021 team, the current Hippos can use the competition in Egypt as a stepping stop to securing moves to higher-ranked Leagues.
The Stars of the 2021 adventure have since moved on to other clubs with a host of them securing moves abroad.
For the coach-Jackson Mayanja, it is a test on the national team level having spent his recent career as a club coach. Whether he can replicate Byekwaso’s heroics in Mauritania or go one better by winning the competition, remains to be seen.
THE HIPPOS TRAVELING SQUAD
Abdu Magada-Gaddafi FC, Kamya Shamulan-Bright Stars FC, Ssenyondwa Denis Kaala- URA FC.
Opiru Justine-URA FC, Ibrahim Juma- FC Leganes, Samson Kasozi-UPDF FC, Ronald Madoi- Wakiso Giants FC, Mukisa Simon- UPDF FC, Ssemayange Simon Kato-Bright Stars FC Lukwago Haruna -KCCA FC, Rogers Torach- Vipers SC.
Allan Kiggundu- BUL FC, Katongole Frank-St Mary’s Kitende, Mugulusi Isma- Makedonikos FC (Greece), Nyanzi Marvin- Wakiso Giants FC. Wabyoona Faisal- KCCA FC, Thomas Kakaire- Mbarara City FC, Bugembe Issa- Bright Stars, Titus Ssematimba- Wakiso Giants FC.
Umar Lutalo- SC Villa, Muhammad Nsereko- SC Villa, Kasinde Ibrahim- Bright Stars FC , Kyeyune Abbas- UPDF FC, Mugisha Rogers-UPDF FC.