August 5, 2021

Uganda striker Mukwala: I needed to justify my call against South Africa

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The forward will be leading URA in Saturday’s league assignment against Busoga United

Uganda striker Steven Mukwala has conceded he needed to justify his call-up to the national team when he came on as a substitute, taking captain Emmanuel Okwi’s place in the 3-2 loss to South Africa.

In the match played on June 10, at Orlando Stadium in Johannesburg, goals from Evidence Makgopa (brace) and Bongokuhle Hlongwane inspired Bafana Bafana to a narrow victory over the Cranes, who scored through Ibrahim Orit and Abdu Lumala.

But for the Uganda Revenue Authority (URA FC) striker, the match meant a lot considering the fact that it was his debut.

“It was remarkable and very honourable for me to wear the national team colours and have a good game,” Mukwala told Football256.

“I have learned a lot on the national team already. Hanging out with senior players like Emmanuel Okwi and other players who have always inspired me is enough motivation.

“When the coach Abdallah Mubiru called upon me to come on, I knew it was my time to prove a point by justifying my call to the national team and also impress to stay. That is why I came in and I was hungry to score goals.”

The forward has further revealed how he managed to get a slot in the Cranes squad, and went on to explain his target to ensure he remains in the team.  

“Of course like any other player, playing for the national team is an ultimate goal, but I guess I wanted it even more so I could not take anything for granted,” Mukwala continued.

“My first job is to score goals for the team to win. I want to keep scoring goals every season, everywhere to maintain my stay in the national team set up.” 

The striker will be leading his team URA on Saturday against Busoga United in the Ugandan Premier League in Jinja. Mukwala has so far been involved in 20 goals – having scored 14 and assisted six in the 24 matches he has played.

The Tax Collectors are second on the table with 57 points and are aiming at claiming this season’s league crown. Express FC lead the race while defending champions Vipers SC are placed third.