It was a point apiece for Uganda and Burkina Faso as they played out to a goalless stalemate in the 2021 AFCON qualifiers group B match at the St. Mary’s Stadium, Kitende.
Uganda came into this game on 7 points, one below Burkina Faso and both sides knew a win against their opponents would potentially seal them a third consecutive berth at the AFCON finals
It was a slow start to the game as neither team were fully prepared to take the risks needed to win the game, an understandable decision considering what was at stake.
Chances were limited for both sides, Patrick Kaddu had his shot parried away for a corner by Herve Koffi in the 17th minute, while moments later, Bertrand Traore used his pace to beat off Halid Lwaliwa but the Vipers skipper recovered brilliantly to intercept Traore’s shot.
Joseph Ochaya and Farouk Miya also wasted chances for the Cranes in the opening half to ensure the game went into the break with the score tied.
Due to a lacklustre first half, Cranes head coach Abdallah Mubiru made a double substitution at the beginning of the second half, bringing on Ibrahim Orit and Moses Waiswa for Abdul Lumala and Mike Azira with the hope that the pair can help his team create more goalscoring chances upfront.
And indeed, the Cranes finally garnered their first shot on target at Malawi’s goal, but Miya’s effort was easily claimed by Koffi.
Uganda was forced to make a third change when talisman Kaddu was subbed off for Fahad Bayo after suffering what seemed like a hamstring injury.
The Cranes continued to dominate play and were just unlucky not to find the opener when Orit’s header rattled the crossbar and back into play only for Edmond Tapsoba to make a clearance.
Two minutes afterwards, Ochaya forced a good save from Koffi as his bullet shot was spilt away by the Stallions goalie in the 70th minute.
Miya had the chance to win the match late on when Waiswa found him at the back post but he was denied by goalie Koffi.
Having shared points, Uganda remains second in group B with 8 points garnered in 5 games, while Burkina Faso remains top with 9 points ahead of the last qualifying game on Monday.
For Uganda to seal a spot at the finals in Cameroon, they need to avoid defeat against Malawi in their final group game. Malawi defeated South Sudan 1-0 in their 5th AFCON qualifier and are on seven points.