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Okello sensational brace downs Somalia

Ugandan forward Alan Okello celebrates his goal against Somalia during the CECAFA Senior Challenge Cup at the Lugogo Arena on December 9, 2019. PHOTO/Timothy Olobulu

KAMPALA, Uganda, Dec 9 – Allan Okello struck a sensational brace as hosts Uganda beat a stubborn Somalia 2-0 at the Lugogo Complex on Monday evening to inch closer to the semi finals of the 2019 CECAFA Senior Challenge Cup.

Uganda are now on six points after back to back victories and will o ky need a point in their next tie against Eritrea on Wednesday to confirm their place in the last four.

Somalia who drew 0-0 with Djibouti  in their last game still have Hope’s with two ,more group stage matches against Burundi and Eritrea awaiting.

While Somalia excited the crowd with their passing and sleek moves, Uganda were more interested in the business end of the game, hunting for goals to earn their semi final slot.

Somalia had the first chance of the game within the opening minute when Hassan Badinur took on a shot from distance, but the effort flew wide.

On the other end, Somalia defender Guled Abdirizak cleared the ball off the line aftrvOkello connected to a Mustafa Kiiza corner with an angled header.

Uganda had more chances with Kiiza forcing the Somalia keeper to tip over his freekick for a corner while the shot stopper had to be alert again in the 14th minute to smoother away a rasping shot from distance by Paul Willa.

The Cranes finally got into the lead in the 28th minute when Okello’s shot from range took an awkward bounce in front of the keeper and dodged his grasp to fly into the net.

It was Uganda all the way with the Cranes not satisfied with the single goal lead. Fahad Bayp had a header off a Kiiza cross go wide while Okello also tried to go for a second but his shot was blocked.

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Somalia recorded their first shot on target in the 36th minute when a rare mistake by John Revita at the back gifted Abdelaziz Safimayo of the ball but the midfielder’s shot flew straight to Charles Lukwago’s waiting arms.

Coming off the break, Uganda kept the pressure and should have been 2-0 up just three minutes after the restart, but Bayo’s header from a Kiiza cross came rattling under the crossbar.

They were however two ahead in the 67th minute when Okello completed his brace with a brilliant curling effort after cutting in from the right.

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