The Cranes of Uganda coach Johnathan McKinstry has revealed that his side will be without four foreign-based players when they face South Sudan in the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifier in November.
McKinstry revealed that the travel restrictions experienced in various countries because of the coronavirus pandemic will be the reason he will not have some players for the double-header against South Sudan.
“We have already highlighted the travel restrictions in place and four of our foreign-based players are likely not to join us,” McKinstry said.
“The squad will be 70% composed of foreign-based players with the rest coming from the local league. But like I said, with travel restrictions when we fail to get some, there must be other options especially from our league. Equally, this in the long run will definitely help our local legion as we plan for Chan.”
The Cranes coach also stated that he will stick with the squad he named before the coronavirus outbreak.
“Definitely, we still have them in our considerations and it will depend on their availability.
“But the situation in March is not the situation now. For example, we did not call Farouk Miya in March because he was out injured but he came back strong and ended the season well with his club in Turkey and he has also started the new season with them. You look at players like Derrick [Nsibambi] in Egypt. It is very important that they are getting playing time week in week out.”
McKinstry stated how impressed he was with the performance of his players in their various clubs in Europe.
“We always tell our players that when they go outside, they have gone to compete at the highest level,” McKinstry continued: “Obviously, it takes time to settle in a new environment like it was the case with Miya in Belgium but he showed commitment and is now doing well.
“When you look at 10 years ago, we only had a few players commanding playing time but that has over the years changed and it is very pleasing that we see many of them playing regularly.”
The Cranes of Uganda will have to play a lot of games in a short period of time as they will prepare for their AFCON qualifiers, World Cup qualifiers, and are set to participate in the African Nations Championship (CHAN) tournament to be hosted by Cameroon.
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