First round, first leg
Sudan 4-0 Rwanda
Tanzania 2-0 Uganda
Blanko Tucak was on the receiving end in his first game as Amavubi coach when his team suffered 4-0 defeat at the hands of Sudan’s Desert Hawks in the first round of the African Nations Championship on Sunday in Khartoum.
Poor tactics were the teams most undoing as the new coach played some players out of position. The poorly organized side went two goals down in the first twenty minutes of the first half as Omar Bakhit and Mohammed Tahir scored for Sudan.
Amavubi’s lone chance came on the 70th minute when Mwemere Girinshuti shot was saved by Akram Salim in Sudan’s goal after Abedi Mulenda’s initial shot had caused Salim some discomfort.
A late Jimmy Gatete substitution for Mulenda worsened the striking department as no striker was left to force Sudan defenders into their own half.
Poor defensive, midfield and striking tactics is what marred the game as Tahir scored the third goal before substitute Ahmed Mohammed scored Sudan’s forth goal.
Tucak’s midfield choice of Aloua Gaseruka and Jean- Baptista Mugiraneza flopped while goalkeeper Jean-Claude Ndoli did his best but poor defending let the hosts score from very feeble efforts.
Fielding Gaseruka in the centre midfield and Elias Uzamukunda as a right winger showed that Tucak has his hands come the second round. Amavubi were not only slow, but paid dearly for some tactical blunders.
The disappointed Croat told reporters on arrival that he abandoned his first half tactics when he saw that his desired system had failed to work out.
“I had lined the players according to the experience I had over Sudan and I should take the blame for the defeat.”
“After a 2-0 loss in the first half, I had to change players on their initial positions to avoid conceding more goals but it also failed in the end,” Tucak said.
Tucak also blamed the players’ physical fitness saying that the squad selected was not the best for him. However, an alert had been given to him by the team captain Jean Baptista Mugiraneza prior to the team’s departure to Khartoum last week.
Players had requested Mugiraneza to intervene for them on the fact that they were not well prepared to face Sudan in terms of team’s physical fitness.
Elsewhere in the region, Tanzania boosted their chances of adavancing to the next round with a 2-0 win over Uganda Cranes in Mwanza.
Emmanuel Gabriel and Shaaban Nditi scored for the home side as Ugandans wasted several opportunities. Only one team will qualify from Central-East Zone to the finals of this tournament which is exclusively for players who feature in their respective domestic leagues.
The second leg matches have been scheduled for May 16-18, where the finals in Cote d’Ivoire run from February 22 to March 8, next year.