KAMPALA, UGANDA: The Federation of Uganda Football Associations (FUFA) has rewarded the Uganda U-20 national football team (Hippos) with a total cash prize of $ 160,000.
This was officially announced by the FUFA President Eng. Moses Magogo during a welcome luncheon held at Imperial Golf View Hotel in Entebbe.
The Uganda Hippos were rewarded for finishing second during their debut AFCON U-20 tournament hosted by Mauritania, loosing out 2-0 to eventual champions Ghana.
Eng. Magogo was at the function flanked by the first FUFA Vice President Justus Mugisha, Executive Committee members Rogers Mulindwa, Hamid Juma and Chrizestom Kalibala, FUFA Deputy CEO – Football Decolas Kiiza, delegates and other FUFA staff.
He congratulated the entire team for the remarkable feat, tagging it as work in progress before he announced the $160,000 token.
‘As FUFA, we set ourselves a vision to be the number one footballing nation in Africa on and off the field of play. We are very ambitious. We are very happy and not disappointed at all. There is an element of humanity and reality that we must accept. We achieved by qualifying for the first ever AFCON finals tournament. Even the best sprinter in the world started by crawling.” Eng Magogo stated.
He added;- “For us as FUFA, it remains work in progress as country. As players, you are in the development stages. This should draw more appetite. FUFA has a very proper strategy to achieve the results. I want to appreciate the FUFA Youth development officer Bashir Mutyaba who has overseen that youth competitions are very organized. I also thank the clubs that have given the youth players a chance to play. Football is a process and not an event. The senior team has to play at the FIFA World Cup. To the players, keep your heads high.’
FUFA First Vice President Justus Mugisha was full of praises for the team, hinting to the Tunisian massacre in the semi-final as the most sweet victory.
‘I want to thank the players for the special performance while at the AFCON U-20 in Mauritania. You showed class, determination and character. I am very happy and was extremely overwhelmed for the 4-1 victory in the semi-finals against Tunisia. This was the best football played’ Mugisha disclosed.
Leader of delegation Rogers Mulindwa saluted the efforts of the Federation, all the players, technical team and all the support staff for the collective responsibility.
‘I thank all the parties at play that joined the hands together to achieve this success. We were a team committed to achieve. The initial target was to get out of the group stages and we made it. We believed in ourselves and made it. In 6 matches played, we won three man of the match accolades, scored 8 goals and conceded 5 with 4 wins. We got the only hattrick of the tournament, the top scorer, silver medals, two players and coach in the CAF team of the tournament and the CAF Fair play award. I also thank the FUFA management led by the president Eng. Moses Magogo and Sunset Hotel in Mauritania where the team was accommodated’ Mulindwa stated.
Head coach Morley Byekwaso lauded the players for the commitment, discipline as he pleaded with FUFA for more opportunities to work with this current crop of players.
‘I wish to thank these players for the commitment, discipline and hard work. We learnt a lot of positive things from this tournament. I request FUFA to grant me the opportunity to work with these players in future. To the players, do not go out and mess with life. Respect the elders and learn from the young ones’ Byekwaso stated.
FUFA has offered the team $160,000 that will be shared amongst all the contingent that made the trip to Mauritania.