Wednesday, December 28, 2016

#UgandaCranes have no money for #AFCON

With just a little over two weeks to go to the prestigious Afcon 2017 when Uganda will make a return after a 39-year long wait, but the Cranes' preparations have been left in balance.

The Cranes, who are scheduled to fly to Tunisia on Friday for two friendly matches, including one against the hosts in Tunis on 4 January, before flying to Dubai the next day for an eight-day camp, are yet to receive a coin from the government.

Cranes head coach Milutin ‘Micho’ Sredojevic took to twitter on Tuesday night to express his frustrations about the delay.

He said, “Uganda Cranes were promised support which never came forcing us to cancel the friendly with Gabon (which was scheduled for 29 December in Libreville), Tunisia and Dubai camps. Now we have been forced to camp in Kampala.”

Fufa Finance Director Decorus Kiiza told the media last Wednesday that the football body was confident that the government of Uganda would meet their end of the bargain.

President Yoweri Museveni pledged to support the Cranes' preparation journey to Afcon 2017 when he hosted the team at a State Luncheon last month.

According to Kiiza, the budget was originally $2.1m but has since been reduced to $1.2m, taking care of every aspect of preparations including accommodation and flights.

Kiiza told the media that, “The government of Uganda undertook to finance the activities of the Uganda Cranes in Gabon. We have finalised the budget synchronisation with the Physical Education department in the Ministry of Education and Sports and the National Council of Sports. It covers all aspects of the campaign including the training program.”

“The budget is at the desk of the First Lady, who is also the Minister of Education and Sports and we are hopeful and optimistic that we shall have positive results from the Ministry and Government.”

According to Micho, the Cranes will now camp in Kampala ahead of the continental showpiece that has attracted the crème de la crème of African football.

Uganda was drawn in group D along with seven-time African champions Egypt, Afcon 2015 finalists Ghana and Mali.

The Cranes face the Black Stars in their opener on 17 January at Stade de Port Gentil.


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