Somalia lost their first game at the CECAFA tournament in to Uganda by 2-0.
Somalia were stubborn in their defence, captain Ahmed Said Ahmed and Omar Sharif Kale doing the donkey work to halt Uganda’s intentions at their goal. The stubbornness however was weathered in the 28th minute when Okello’s grass cutter outside the 18-yard box beat Aweys Ali for the opener.
The Monday evening clash at the KCCA Stadium Lugogo- Kampala, Uganda was a one-sided affair with Somalia only finding pride in few highlights that would however end with nothing to show for.
Earlier at the same venue, Eritrea staged the so far upset of the tournament, with a 1-0 victory over Burundi. Robel Kidale’s goal at the stroke of halftime was all Eritrea needed to edge a lacklustre Burundi, whose second straight loss leaves them on the brink of elimination at the regional tourney.
Poignantly, Eritrea had every reason to celebrate as they are returning to the tournament after seven years in the cold following the ban imposed on them in 2012.
They had lost to Uganda 2-1 on Saturday, thus will need to beat Djibouti and Somalia to keep and hope results for the other members of Group A favour them to advance to the last four.
Hassan Abdinur Gessy would have opened the scores in the first minute, a miscommunication in the Cranes defence giving him space in the box but he shot inches off target.
Fahad Bayo’s header from a Joel Madondo’s corner in the 7th minute missed narrowly at the left post with Aweys Ali beaten, before another one from Joakim Ojera was cleared to the relief of Somalia, who were completely lost in the opening 10 minutes.
Paul Willa was lurking from the right channel when he was well picked by Khalid Lwaliwa, and noticing a big space in the Somalia back line, he fired a thunderous shot from 30 yards which Aweys had to parry out for safety. The resulting corner was wasted courtesy of Bayo and Ojera’s simple misunderstanding.
Bayo grabbed the ball from Awey’s Ali hands, sliding his head on his arms but he could not direct the ball into the back of the net.
In the 35th minute, Bright Anukali danced around the Somali defence, but eventually looped the ball straight to the hands of the keeper as Uganda kept knocking for the second goal.
Somalia got their first shot on target through Farhan Mahamoud Omar in the 36th, which however gave keeper Charles Lukwago no trouble to handle