Uganda U20 Men’s National team head coach Morley Byekwaso says the team looked inexperienced at the start of the tournament but are now using every chance they are getting to move to another level.
The tactician made those remarks following his side’s penalty shoot-out victory over Burkina Faso at the on-going AFCON U20 championships in Mauritania on Thursday, February 25.
After a goalless draw in 90 minutes, the Hippos overcame Burkina Faso 5-3 on penalties with goalkeeper Jack Komakech saving one (penalty).
The win saw Uganda reach the semi finals of the competition for the first time in history.
“We won in penalties because in football every thing is possible.” Byekwaso said after the game.
“Every team that reaches the quarter finals is good and you have to expect a plan B.
“The game has been difficult to win as Burkina Faso played very well in the two halves, full of physic and high intensity.”
Burkina Faso indeed played well and hit the woodwork at some stage.
However, Uganda was resilient, upsetting the odds to reach the last four in what is their maiden appearance at the finals.
“We came here as underdogs and no one expected us to perform like this being debutants in the tournament.
“But we dreamt a lot playing with the superpower-countries like Morocco, Algeria, Cameroon and others and we knew how we could handle the situations that we face.
“We knew we are not such a good side so we came play as a team working with a similar objective of trying to become the best nation in Africa as emphasized by the FUFA President.”
The Hippos out classed Mozambique and Mauritania and then lost to Cameroon, collecting six points so as to make it to the quarter finals.
They will now face either Morocco or Tunisia in the semi finals.