Uganda has played to a goalless draw with Mali in the second Group E game of the FIFA 2022 Qatar World Cup qualifying game at St. Mary’s stadium, Kitende
Uganda Cranes defensive midfielder Khalid Aucho had a busy time blocking attacks ignited by Mali’s Adama Traore in the opening half, although the two sides started off with no big threats at either opponent’s goal.
In the second half, striker Derrick Nsibambi and skipper Emmanuel Okwi attacked the opponent’s side with ease before defender Murushid Jjuuko was sent off the pitch for a crams challenge that caused panic in Uganda’s defence until the end of the game.
The teams both entered the clash looking for victory. Uganda wanted a win to help her generate four points after a goalless draw against Kenya in the opener while Mali was looking for a second straight win to help them make six points in the group.
Mali’s head coach Mohamed Magassouba said his team was affected by the artificial turf and the rains in Kitende, yet the team also missed some of its players who play their professional football in Italy and England.
Uganda Cranes head coach Micho Sredojevic said his players lack competitiveness after spending a lot of time without active football. He, however, said the technical team will do its best to boost their fitness by October.
Before their game on Monday, the two other group opponents in the group, Kenya and Rwanda had played to a one-all draw in their second games in the group. A win for either Uganda or Mali was pivotal in their bid to go top of the qualifying group.
Now, as it stands, Uganda is trailing in the third position with one point below Mali which has four points while Kenya is second with two points. Uganda’s next fixture in the qualifiers will be a doubleheader against Rwanda next month. Rwanda is the last in the group with only one point.