In the aftermath of last Saturday's 4-0 demolition of South Sudan in the last group match, Cranes coach Bobby Williamson has a selection puzzle at hand when the hosts line up against Ethiopia in the quarterfinals, write Moses Mugalu and Elly Kyeyune.
In the game against South Sudan, which had more of pride and classification at stake, Williamson made five key changes in the Cranes starting eleven and the new boys took the chance gracefully as they orchestrated the stylish display. Brian Umony's brace and a goal apiece from Robert Ssentongo and Hamis Kizza ensured the Cranes' biggest win so far in the Cecafa Senior Challenge Cup tournament.
Third-choice keeper Ali Kimera, defenders Nicolas Wadada and Manko Kaweesa, midfielder Said Kyeyune and striker Robert Ssentongo are some of the players who used Bobby's offer to the maximum to make their case for starting slots. In particular, Kyeyune, who came in place of rested skipper Hassan Wasswa, highlighted his stellar performance on the evening with a spectacular assist for Brian Umony's second goal.
The 19-year-old Uganda Revenue Authority (URA) FC player weaved through the Sudanese defenders and cut back for unmarked Umony to score with ease. Similarly, defenders Wadada and Kaweesa put up a good account of themselves with flawless displays, which probably left first choice Denis Iguma and Godfrey Walusimbi a worried lot.
For the strikers, the pressure must be on Emma Okwi who is yet to score in the tournament. And, as The Cranes gear up for today's quarterfinal tie Ethiopia, which they beat 1-0 in the group game last week, Bobby will be spoilt for choice as players compete for places. For Umony, who has netted three goals so far, will be the star man to watch out for the Ethiopians.
The KCCA striker scored the lone winner for the Cranes against Ethiopia in that group match on November 27.