Uganda Hippos Must Target Qualifying for World Cup – Magogo

The President of the Federation of Uganda Football Associations (FUFA), Moses Magogo has asked the National Under 20 team, the Hippos to shift their focus to qualifying for the U-20 World Cup 2023 that will be hosted in Indonesia.

Magogo made these remarks while speaking to the Hippos team at a brief event at the FUFA Headquarters in Mengo when he hosted them after returning form Khartoum, Sudan.

The Uganda Hippos qualified for the U-20 Total Energies Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) 2023 and also retained the CECAFA U-20 Championship title by stopping South Sudan 2-1 in the final.

The U-20 AFCON will also serve as a qualifier for the Under-20 World Cup 2023, with the best four teams (semi-finalists) qualifying for the tournament later in Indonesia. Uganda’s team will just need to reach the semifinals to clinch a place in the World Cup.

Magogo said that the Hippos players should know that they have the potential to qualify for the world’s biggest soccer tournament considering their talent and added that the Federation will rally behind them in terms of supporting their preparations.

“It is our dream that we have to take a team to the World Cup, and the next team that we have in vision that can go to the world cup is you. On behalf of the Federation I can assure you that we are going to give you the maximum support, we must give you the best preparations,” he said.

In 2021, Uganda Hippos qualified for the World cup after reaching the final of the African Cup of Nations in Mauritania. However, FIFA was obliged to cancel the World Cup tournament that was slated for May 20 to June 12th, 20021 due to COVID-19.

Magogo believes that this current team is able to emulate their predecessors, considering the fact that the team has a blend of players from the golden era, who reached the AFCON U20 Final in Mauritania in 2021.

Head coach Jackson Mayanja told URN that he had already briefed the players that his main target is qualifying for World Cup, a day after he was named the Head coach, and he believes that the boys are capable of doing so.  

Mayanja also committed himself to recruiting other players that can join the team, to form a formidable squad that will replicate what the previous team did in Mauritania.  

Isma Muguluusi, the Hippos captain equally tips the team to triumph in the forthcoming African Cup of Nations. He says unlike before; the current squad has the highest level of teamwork which he says is key if a team is to progress.

Meanwhile, Magogo also pledged a cash Prize of five million shillings to every member of the team including players and technical staff as a token of appreciation for winning the CECAFA U-20 title and qualifying for the U-20 AFCON 2023.

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