Uganda Cranes head coach Jonathan McKinstry was left fuming after receiving word that his captain and goalkeeper Dennis Onyango will not be part of the team’s training camp in Dubai.
The Cranes on Thursday morning touched base in Dubai ahead of the Nine day training camp prior to the team’s AFCON Qualifiers double header against South Sudan next month.
Onyango was among the 24 players summoned for the camp but will not be joining the rest of the team after being stopped from travelling to Dubai.
PSL champions Mamelodi Sundowns claim that their priceless asset will have to undergo a two-weeks quarantine upon return which rules him out for the start of the season which is scheduled for 17th October.
“We are very disappointed in Mamelodi Sundowns position regarding not releasing Onyango for international duty during the October 2020 FIFA dates,” Mckinstry told FUFA Website.
He added, “Whilst they have released other team members to their respective nations; they communicated to us on Monday this week that they wished to keep Onyango with them on the basis that he would have to quarantine upon return to South Africa.”
“As a national team we have been clear that we would not call players to this camp who would have to quarantine on return to their respective clubs for example players based in Israel and USA.”
“We asked Sundowns for evidence of the regulation regarding quarantine, and they were only able to provide information regarding tourists arriving in South Africa, and not residents as is the case with Onyango,” he continued.
“Upon further checks from our side, the South African government’s position appears clear regarding any potential quarantine in that exceptions exist for business travellers with rare and critical skills, diplomats, investors, repatriated individuals and professional athletes.”
The Northern Ireland tactician furthermore backed Onyango whom he claims was positive to join the camp only to be denied by his paymasters.
“We would like to state however, that Onyango has always been eager to join us in Dubai and we feel he has been put in a very difficult position by his employers.”
“As such we attach no blame in this situation to the player who remains a key part of our plans for AFCON 2022 and the 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification,” the gaffer added.
“Mamelodi Sundowns are one of the leading clubs in Africa, and this situation, in our opinion differs greatly from the levels of professionalism we have come to expect from them over the years,” he further noted.
Earlier this week, Smouha Sports Club forward Derrick Nsibambi was ruled out of the camp having got an armstring injury in a league duel.
Currently, Eight foreign based players in Jayden Onen, Elvis Bwomono, Joesph Ochaya, Nicolas Wadada, Allan Kyambade, Salim Jamal, Farouk Miya and Bevis Mugabi have already joined the locally based players in camp.