Uganda Crested Cranes Coach Faridah Bulega has revealed that she is not in anyway disappointed after being knocked out by a better Kenya side.
On Sunday, Kenya held Uganda to a goalless draw at Lugogo to progress to the next round of the Africa Women Cup of Nations qualifiers with a 1-0 aggregate victory – The Harambee Starlets had won the first leg 1-0 back in Machakos.
Bulega revealed that a difference could have been made if the foreign based players (like Sandra Nabweteme, Joan Nakirya, Fazirah Ikwaput etc) were brought to help strengthen the side.
The Coach also cried out to the Football governing body in Uganda, FUFA to give the women’s team more games.
The above, Bulega believes, that can polish the girls up to the standards of stronger sides like Kenya.
Bulega who was speaking in a Post match press conference, said:
“Am not disappointed because you reap what you sow, if we got ten days to prepare for this and we have brought this result, Am happy.
“I need time to build this team up to the required standards, so, I request the federation (FUFA) to give us more competitions for the girls to get used to these games.”
However, Bulega thinks has much belief in this current of players and Federation:
“I will have to thank the Federation for the opportunity they gave us to compete and am sure that in a few years to come, we will make it to the Championship.”
On the players, she said:
” These young girls have shown a good fighting spirit, they are very promising and I have always believed in them.
“The Kenyans are very good, they have been in AWCON four times but the girls managed to give them some real competition. Am sure that in few years to come, we will make it.”
It should be remembered that Uganda has been at this Championship once, way back in 2000 when qualification opponents DR Congo withdrew and the Crested Cranes qualified by default to Johannesburg.
In that tourney, Uganda failed to make it out of the group stages; drew 2-2 with Zimbabwe, lost 3-0 to hosts South Africa and won 2-1 against Reunion with Mbekeka scoring the winner, a tournament which was won by Nigeria.
Since 2002, this was the second time the Crested Cranes are competing in these qualifiers: Uganda lost to DR Congo (5-1 on aggregate) in 2012 but the country has withdrawn from qualifications in 2004, 2006, 2008, 2010, 2014 and 2016.