Cranes to play friendlies against Brazil, Argentina

Uganda Cranes striker Fahad Bayo in action during an AFCON qualifier | Photo Credit: FUFA Media

FOOTBALL Cranes to play friendlies against Brazil, Argentina

Shafic Kiyaga 11:40 - 19.10.2023

The game is expected to be the climax and epitome of the FUFA Centenary Celebrations in 2024, marking an illustrious 100 years since its foundation in 1924.

Uganda Football governing body, FUFA is orchestrating a grand plan to pit the Uganda Cranes against global football giants – Brazil or Argentina in a friendly game.

The game is expected to be the climax and epitome of the FUFA Centenary Celebrations in 2024, marking an illustrious 100 years since its foundation in 1924.

This gesture, if realized, will go down in history, given that the Cranes have never squared off against such football heavyweights in an official capacity.

Sources from Mengo have hinted to Pulse Sports Uganda that high-level deliberations have already taken place at FUFA's executive committee level with the committee handling the preps.

The Uganda Cranes team that started against Niger in their final qualifier for the 2023 AFCON | Photo Credit: FUFA Media

Further amplifying the 100th-anniversary plans, FUFA, in June 2022, established the 'FUFA @100 years Committee', tasked with planning the centenary events.

Rogers Byamukama, the Head of Marketing at FUFA, will chair the committee.

The grand roadmap for the jubilant celebrations remains under wraps, but it's safe to say that fans are on the edge of their seats.

Uganda Cranes payers celebrating Aziz Kayondo's opener against Niger in their 2023 AFCON qualifier | Photo Credit: FUFA Image

The next step, as the rumour mill suggests, will be to reach out to the football federations of Brazil and Argentina to flesh out the logistics of this ambitious matchup.

However, the federation is not placing all its bets on just these two nations. Other football giants such as England, Italy, Germany, Spain, and France are also on the consideration radar.

For Ugandan fans, this could translate into a dream come true: witnessing their national team lock horns with football superstars like Neymar, Vinicius Junior.

Manchester United and Argentina wonder kid Alejandro Garnacho, Kylian Mbappe, or Arsenal’s emerging star, Bukayo Saka could also play football in the Pearl of Africa.

Vinicius in action for Real Madrid || Photo Credit: Imago

The Cranes despite not playing officially against Brazil, having previously played against an Alem Brazilian side back in July 2009.

That memorable game saw the Cranes overpower the Brazilians 4-1 at Nakivubo Stadium, attracting a roaring crowd of over 15,000 spectators.

Paulo Sergio, a hero from Brazil's 1994 World Cup-winning squad, led the visiting team.

Uganda's football history is also sprinkled with intriguing tales, including the 1956 tour of the United Kingdom, where they astonishingly toppled their Olympics-bound team with a 2-1 victory.

Established in 1924 as the Uganda Football Association, FUFA came to life when a group of passionate sports enthusiasts and avid footballers convened to deliberate on promoting football in Uganda, a sport initially brought to the nation by missionaries.

By 1953, the association had evolved to include representation through four provincial associations, namely Buganda, Eastern, Northern, and Western.

Subsequent developments saw the formation of District Associations and affiliations with teams from various provinces to their respective Provincial Associations.

1962 marked the initiation of a league, with the pioneering affiliates of the Uganda Football Association being Government Departments and commercial entities.

By 1960, FUFA had secured its official affiliation with the International Football Association, now known as the Federation of International Football Association (FIFA), as well as the Confederation of African Football (CAF).

The organization initially operated out of Nakivubo Stadium in Kampala. Today, FUFA's headquarters is located at FUFA House, situated at Plot No. 879, Kyadondo Block 8, on Wakaliga Road in Mengo.