Desabre's DR Congo leaves Uganda Cranes with tough lessons ahead of Algeria duel

Gift Fred closes in on Theo Bongonda during Uganda Cranes game against DRC(FECOFA)

AFCON 2023 Q Desabre's DR Congo leaves Uganda Cranes with tough lessons ahead of Algeria duel

Fred Mwambu 18:04 - 14.06.2023

Uganda Cranes lost 1-0 to DR Congo in an international friendly ahead of the team's 2023 Africa Cup of Nations against Algeria.

Uganda Cranes have received tough lessons from DR Congo, losing 1-0 ahead of the crucial 2023 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Algeria on Sunday 18th June in Cameroon.

Theo Bongoda converted from the spot to give the Leopards, coached by Sebastian Desabre, the all-important win against his former side.

The Congolese were the better side in the first half pushing Uganda deeper through their tricky wingers.

The pressure finally yielded through Aaron Tshibola and Bongoda in the 23rd minute when the latter passed to the Cadiz star to try a beautiful rabona pass.

His kick was successful, but its intention was not met as Halid Lwaliwa intercepted it with his arm off its natural position, deflecting it out for a corner.

However, the centre referee did not hesitate to point at the spot for a penalty.

Bongoda stood for the kick and sent Jamal the wrong way.

Wasted chances

The Cranes improved towards the end of the first half, trying long balls upfront to find Fahad Bayo.

However, the striker thrice failed to beat the trap, wasting deliveries from Isma Mugulusi, Jamal and Bobosi Byaruhanga.

Bobosi also had a long-range attempt that kissed the bar on its way out.

Coach Micho made wholesale adjustments in the second half, bringing in playmaker Moses Waiswa, striker Milton Karisa, and goalkeeper Charles Lukwago at the start.

Karisa had a chance seven minutes later but left-back Nsimba Nsimba pulled him just outside the box. Okwi fired the freekick out.

Micho added more firepower in Travis Mutyaba and Richard Basangwa.

Uganda got the best chance of the day through a counterattack that found Basangwa in the box in the 81st minute.

The striker looked up on his shoulder and, unselfishly, laid the ball for Karisa to bury in an empty net but to his dismay, Siadi Baggio recovered back to pull an unbelievable save.

How the team lined up

Coach Milutin ‘Micho’ Sredojevic made four changes from the team that started against Tanzania in match four, bringing on Gift Fred in defence to replace Timothy Awany, who was not called.

Khalid Aucho, who arrived late, was rested with Miya and Isma Mugulusi, boosting Bobosi Byaruhanga in the midfield as Bayo and Okwi searched for the goals.

At the back, Kenneth Semakula, Kayondo, Lwaliwa and Fred shielded Jamal.

International Friendly

Uganda 0-1 DR Congo

AFCON 2023 Qualifiers

Sunday 18th June

Group F

Uganda vs Algeria – Douala, Algeria

Tanzania vs Niger – Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania

Group I

Gabon vs DR Congo – Franceville, Gabon