The Cranes line up from left to right: Emmanuel Okwi, Joseph Ochaya, Murushid Juuko, Khalid Aucho, Hassan Wasswa, Denis Onyango. (Front row) Nico Wakiro Wadada, Isaac Isinde, Derrick Nsibambi, Godfrey Walusimbi, Farouk Miya.( Photo by FUFA media)
The Uganda Cranes broke the hoodoo of failing to beat the Pharaohs. Uganda had never beaten Egypt since 1965 and their last goal against the pharaohs had come in 2013 when Fabian Kizito scored during the 2-1 win in Alexandria.
Egypt coach Hector made a few surprises to his team when he left winger Ramadan Ahmed on the bench, optic no for Hassan Mahmoud.
Uganda looked to be the more prepared team for the task when they started attacking Egypt right from the onset but it was Egypt who registered the 1st corner of the day.
Uganda’s 1st chance fell to Emmanuel Okwi when he shot in an acute angle but Essam El Hadary was up to the task and he tipped over the bar. Mahmoud Solil thought he had put Egypt in the lead in the 32nd his tap in was adjudged for offside by the referee.
Captain Denis Onyango lines up against El Hadary yesterday
It looked to be Okwi’s day when he took Joseph Ochaya’s perfectly weighed cross on the rebound but El Hadary was again up to the task to keep the score 0-0 going into half time.
Enter the second period and Hector Cuper tried to make some amends hurriedly to chase the game, he introduced Ramadan Ahmed Sobhi for Hassan Mahmoud and Egypt began to threaten Uganda’s goal.
Uganda received two corners in succession in the 47th and 49th minute, at this moment the pressure had mounted on the Egyptians who began to clear the ball aimlessly out of danger.
Essam El Hadary had a busy evening against the Uganda Cranes
It was one of those balls that Farouk Miya managed to control and directed a well knit cross in Okwi ‘s direction. Juuko Murushid guided it onto Okwi’s path who superbly controlled it and shook off 3 on rushing Egyptian defenders to slot home a sweet left low shot deep into the corner and far away from El Hadary in the 51st minute.
Egypt fell shot of finding an immediate response when Denis Onyango miraculously made a point blank save to deny Mohammed Salah who headed home from close range.
Hector Cuper decided to throw the kitchen sink at the Cranes by introducing Seifeldin Karim and Saleh Saleh but the cranes held their nerve to seal a well deserved 1-0 win.
Head coach Moses Basena and his team had their A game yesterday against Egypt (Photo by FUFA media).
There was some drama at the end when the center referee profoundly opposed his 4th official for adding on only 4 minutes into the normal regulation time, he instructed him to add an extra 3 making it 7.
The Cranes will set off for Egypt on Saturday 2nd die the return leg of the World Cup qualifier 2017.
Isaac Isinde (2′)
Denis Onyango (82′)
Onyango, Wadada, Walusimbi, Isinde, Juuko, Wasswa, Aucho, Okwi (Sserunkuma 88′), Miya (Luwagga 75′), Nsibambi, Ochaya (Muleme 96′).
El-Hadary, Abdel-Shafi, Hegazy, Rabia, Fathi, Hamed, Elneny, El-Said (Hamed 73′), Trezeguet (Sobhi 46′), Salah, Kahraba (Gamal 67′).