The Uganda Cubs will begin their 2023 U17 Africa Cup of Nations qualifications campaign on Saturday in Ethiopia.
Head coach Hamza Lutalo’s side had ample time to prepare for the CECAFA Zonal qualifiers and they are waiting with bated breath to get underway.
“Since we entered the camp, the players have been improving, and the several practice games we had put them in the perfect shape possible,” Lutalo was quoted by the FUFA website.
“We also arrived here (Ethiopia) on Sunday and that has helped us to also get used to the weather here.”
“The boys are mentally and physically ready for the tournament and therefore we can not wait for the games to begin,” he noted.
Uganda is in Group B which also has Burundi, Sudan, and Djibouti, and Lutalo’s Cubs will kick off with the latter on Saturday, October 1 at Abebe Bikila Stadium.
The best two performing teams at the competition will represent the CECAFA region at the 2023 AFCON in Algeria.
CECAFA’s representatives will have a chance to play at the 2023 World Cup should they finish in the semifinals of AFCON.
Uganda has not played at the World Cup before, but they have played at the AFCON where they did not go beyond the group stages at their maiden tournament held in Tanzania in 2019.
They qualified for their second AFCON in 2021 but it was not held in Morocco due to the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic.