Two goals from Hakim Mutebi and Batiibwe Okello gave Uganda the advantage over Kenya, who had thousands of supporters who flocked to Jomo Kenyatta Stadium to support their team.
uganda won the trophy
Uganda National under 18 team are the Champions of
Council for East and Central Africa Football Associations- CECAFA tournament 2023.
The team came from behind to beat Kenya 2-1 in the final of the tournament
played at Jomo Kenyatta Membo Leo stadium in Kisumu.
Two goals from Hakim Mutebi and Batiibwe Okello gave
Uganda the advantage over Kenya, who had thousands of supporters who flocked to
Jomo Kenyatta Stadium to support their team.
Kenya entered the game following a fantastic performance
in the group stages and semifinals, where they had preserved a perfect record
throughout the tournament, finishing first in group A with nine points before
defeating Tanzania in the semifinal.
On the other hand, Uganda's journey had a shaky start
with a 1-0 loss to Tanzania but saw a remarkable turnaround in the last two
group games, defeating both Zanzibar and South Sudan to secure six points and
top their group. before defeating Rwanda
1-0 in the semifinal.
The two teams went toe-to-toe for
the entire first half but none of the them managed to score a goal.
However, Kenya took an early second-half lead against the visitors through a
65th-minute goal courtesy of Syphas Otieno Owuor.
Owour received the ball direct off Ibrahim Wanzala, the
Kenyan custodian, and manoeuvred it with the side of his head before putting it
past the Ugandan goalkeeper.
But, shortly after, in the 77th minute, a foul kick found SC
Villa midfielder Batiibwe Okello in the area. Okello easily defeated Ibrahim to
tie the score.
Despite efforts by both teams to break the
stalemate in the last minutes of the game, the score remained identical going
into extra time. But, Uganda took the lead barely 50 seconds into the opening
half of extra time thanks to Hakim Mutebi who eventually won the Most valuable
Speaking after the game, Uganda's Head Coach Morley
Byekwaso stated that while the Kenyan squad proved to be a strong opponent, his
team also fought hard due to the preparations they had for the game.
“The Kenyan team proved to be a formidable opponent. We faced
challenges in securing a goal in the first half. We devoted significant effort
to preparation leading up to today’s match, and I extend my gratitude to my
players for the positive outcome.” He said.