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CECAFA Women U20: Uganda Squander Lead As Ethiopia Crowned Champions

Tuesday, November 9
*Uganda 2-3 Ethiopia

Uganda threw away a two-goal lead against Ethiopia who also recovered from a numerical disadvantage to stage a thrilling comeback and win the inaugural CECAFA Women U20 Championship at FUFA Technical Centre in Njeru.

Uganda needed at least a draw to finish top of the six-nation log while Ethiopia wanted nothing but victory.

Ethiopian goalkeeper Lorato was sent off in the early exchanges after bringing down Striker Fauziah Najjemba to deny the captain a clear goal-scoring opportunity.

Hadija Nandago scored the opener before Najjemba doubled the advantage from a free-kick to hand Uganda a big advantage.

And with a 2-0 lead at the break, against a 10-man side, the celebrations were evident as the teams went back to the rest rooms.

Ridet Assrasahang led the fight back for Ethiopia after Uganda’s defence was caught flat-footed to halve the deficit just five minutes after restart.

And when Ariet Odong leveled matters for Ethiopia in the 78th minute, Uganda’s body language told the whole story. Most players cut miserable figures, despite the result still being in their favour then.

Ethiopia, who minutes earlier saw their head coach sent off for protesting, grabbed what later proved to be the winner thanks to Turist Lema’s strike.

Ethiopia finishes the tournament with five wins from as many games while Uganda ends in second.

It was an uncharacteristic performance from Uganda who had a 100% record coming into Tuesday’s epic decider.

Uganda’s positives will come in the consolation of a Fair Play award, Daphine Nyayenga’s Golden Gloves and Najjemba’s top scorer gong after the captain finished with 11 goals.

It remains to be seen what damage the result will have on Ayub Khalifa’s charges as the team prepares to face South Africa in the FIFA U20 Women World Cup Qualifiers later on.


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