Crested Cranes edge closer to next round of 2024 Paris Olympics Women Football

The Crested Cranes saw off Cameroon to move closer to qualifying for the next round of the 2024 Paris Olympics women football tournament.

The Cranes beat the Cameroonians 2-0 in the first leg game played at the FUFA Technical Centre, Njeru in Buikwe district.

In the first game for interim head coach Charles Ayiekho Lukula in which defender Justine Najjuko and midfielder Zaitun Namaganda were handed their debuts, the hosts took the lead only 11 minutes after kick off when Catherine Nagadya capitalized on a goalkeeping error to put the ball into the back of the net.

The Cameroon goalkeeper had fumbled with Shamirah Nalugya’s ferocious strike from free kick and spilled the ball into Nagadya’s path who fired home from the rebound and sent fans into frenzy at Njeru.

At the half hour mark, the Cameroonians were awarded a penalty when defender Justine Najjuuko handled the ball in the forbidden area.

However, the team captain Ajara Njoya failed to capitalize on this when her effort his the base of the post.

At the start of the second half, the coach made several changes. Bridget Nabisaalu and Asia Nakibuuka replaced Justine Najjuuko and Zaitun Namaganda respectively whereas the injured Phiona Nabbumba was replaced by Jackline Adong who was making her debut.

Uganda doubled their lead, thanks to Fazilla Ikwaput who capitalized on a melee in front of the Cameroonians goal to slot the ball in the back of the net in the 77th minute.

The win ensured Uganda goes into the return leg in Younde tomorrow with a two goal lead.

The winner between Uganda and Cameroon will face either Nigeria or Ethiopia in the next round of the 2024 Paris Olympics women football tournament .

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