The Venom came on in the second half and headed a goal late to help the Cranes pick a slim win against the Bright Stars
Uganda captain Denis Onyango has picked Vipers SC’s Halid Lwaliwa for praise for his performance against South Sudan in an Africa Cup of Nations qualifier on Thursday.
Lwaliwa was introduced in the second half when Khalid Aucho picked a knock, and went ahead to score the goal that separated the sides who were otherwise destined for a draw.
Uganda hosted their Group B opponents at St Mary’s Stadium, home ground to Premier League champions Vipers and that means Lwaliwa was playing on a pitch he knows well.
“Lwaliwa was playing from home since he is the captain of the side that features here [St Mary’s Stadium] and I would like to thank him for the goal and for his good performance, he played really well,” Onyango said as per Football256.
Onyango also explained why Uganda struggled against South Sudan, a side that is yet to pick a point in the group and are ranked 86 places below the Cranes on the recent Fifa rankings.
“It was a difficult game played on an artificial turf which most of the players are not used to but those who are familiar with it came on and helped us,” the Mamelodi Sundowns goalkeeper added.
“And on a general note, most of the young lads that have come into the team have really changed their game a lot which is also good for the Cranes’ future.”
“As you saw South Sudan are an improved side, all we need to do is to care about ourselves, put up a much better performance on Monday and highlight our chances of sealing qualification.”
The return game will be held at Nyayo Stadium on November 16 and Uganda know a win against their northern neighbours will be enough to seal a place in the next Afcon edition.
Head coach Johnathan McKinstry is a concerned coach over the fitness levels of Aucho and Ronald Mukiibi who were injured during the initial tie.
The coach had to pick SC Villa’s David Owori in order to fill the place of TP Mazembe’s Joseph Ochaya who remains suspended due to bookings.
The Cecafa giants have already begun their journey to Nairobi for next week’s showdown.
Uganda are now second in Group B with seven points and are separated from Burkina Faso by goal difference.