Uganda Cranes coach Jonathan Mckinstry has said that the confirmation of AFCON and CHAN dates comes as a relief to the Uganda Cranes players.
CAF recently announced that CHAN will take place in January next year in Cameroon while AFCON will take place in 2021.
“The confirmation by CAF of the CHAN Tournament for January 2021 is a relief to the players,” the Northern Irishman said. “The players were more concerned and worried that this tournament could be called off because if you looked at the schedule, it was a challenge to see where it could be fixed.”
“Now the tournament is only six months away. This is really close. Everyone is refocused, re-energized and hungry to go. The Star Times Uganda Premier League kicks off in October 2020 and the players are really ready.
“We as the technical team are also looking forward and putting together some plans. Hopefully, CECAFA 2020 will be happening and this will help in the preparations. The players are staff are now motivated with more energy.”
Mckinstry, who was speaking to FUFA, added that the Covid19 period has been challenging but he is hopeful that this frustration will be converted to energy when football returns.
He added that he feels jealousy that action has already resumed in Europe.
On how he will select his future squad to compete in upcoming tournaments, he revealed:
“The Uganda Cranes players are hungry to get back to AFCON and play at the FIFA World Cup,” he stated. “We are all hungry for football to resume. Selection will purely be down to it will be down to player performance.”
“There is a wide pool of players to think about and select; these are players in the domestic league, in the diaspora league, and those of Ugandan heritage playing elsewhere.
“If you want to put on the treasured Uganda Cranes shirt, you have to be on top of your game. There is need for continuous assessment of the players, monitoring all and they must maintain that high performance.
“The wider the pool of players, the more competition it brings to the team, the more competition, the better the 11 we shall have to produce. Uganda is a football-loving country. Fine, the supporters have been frustrated with no football action but let us turn this frustration into positive energy.”