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U17 WWCQ: Dawn of a new era as Uganda host Ethiopia

Sinan RAJUB SENOGA

The Uganda U17 national team takes on Ethiopian counterparts in the first leg of the first round of the FIFA U17 Women’s World Cup at Kitende.

Once again the team is under Ayub Khalifa Kiyingi having played in the same qualifiers in 2019.

Between now and then, only three players from the 2019 team are currently available and eligible to play since the big bunch graduated to the next age group.

The 2019 team under the captaincy of Juliet Nalukenge, won the COSAFA and CECAFA tournaments and also came close to qualifying for the World Cup.

They beat Ethiopia 5-1 on aggregate in the first round and also eliminated their Tanzanian neighbors 6-2 and had to face Cameroon in the final but the qualifiers were cancelled due to the rise of COVID-19.

Shakira Nyinagahirwa who has been named the new captain, together with Hadija Nandago and Catherine Nagadya are the only surviving members of the 2019 team.

Despite having a new crop of inexperienced players, Nyinagahirwa is positive the team is ready to undertake the task at hand,

” Players are ready to take on Ethiopia because the coaches have done their best during the training sessions and the time we have spent in camp and we are ready to get the best results.” The Kawempe Muslim midfielder said.

” Our main objective is to eliminate Ethiopia but we have to focus on each game starting with this one.”

She added

It should be remembered that Nagadya was on target when both teams faced off at this stage at Lugogo two years ago.

The aggregate winner of the tie will face South Africa who earned a walkover following the suspension of Kenya.

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