2026 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers: Mato caps Cranes’ first win for Paul Put against 10 man Somalia

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David GOMBE

Rogers Mato inspired Uganda Cranes to their first win in the 2026 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers on Tuesday at Stadium Du Municipal in Berkene, Morocco.

Mato fired the Cranes into an early lead in the 4th minute of the contest.

The Cranes who suffered a heartbreaking 2-1 defeat in Paul Put’s first game in charge last week cruised to a 1-0 victory over 10 man Somalia.

Somalia defender Ahmed Mohammed was sent off before the halftime breather.

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The Somalis came into this game after a 3-1 defeat to Algeria in their opening game.

Cranes head coach Put made three changes from the team that lost 2-1 to Guinea with Isima Watenga replacing Salim Omar Magoola while youngster Allan Oyirwoth was handed his debut.

Elvis Bwomono started at right back with Kenneth Semakula moving to the midfield.

Before halftime, both Mato and Travis Mutyaba had decent chances to double Cranes advantage but both failed to hit the target.

The second period did not produce much scoring opportunities as Put’s men secured victory over the 196th and lowest Ranked side in Africa.

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After the two games, Uganda is currently on three points in Group G that is topped by Algeria with six points.

Uganda will return to action in June next year with two home games against Botswana and Algeria.

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