7 of the Biggest Achievements in Ugandan Football History

Football is the most popular sport in the southern African nation of Uganda – and in the last century it has experienced a meteoric rise in prestige and accomplishment.

First introduced by British missionaries and colonists at the tail end of the 19th century, football is now widely played, watched and supported by the country’s 45.8 million-strong population, with betting enthusiasts regularly visiting their favorite crypto sportsbook to place a bet on the outcome of the latest matches.

Although the country is yet to make its first appearance at the World Cup finals, it has still enjoyed some incredible moments in its history, recording some very memorable victories and picking up a cartload of trophies along the way. We take a look at some of the biggest achievements the country has witnessed in this nostalgic and inspiring article.

1897 – First beginnings

British missionaries such as Robert Henry Walker, Alexander Gordon Fraser and George Lawrence Pilkington first introduced the sport of association football to the eastern towns and villages of Uganda at the end of the 19th century. With the development of the country’s rail system, its popularity gradually spread across the length and breadth of the nation.

1932 – Uganda beat Kenya 13-1 in Gossage Cup Final

The Gossage Cup was first contested between Uganda and Kenya in 1926, with the latter team triumphing 2-1 after a replay. However, six years later the Cranes would have their revenge in a famous victory as they crushed their opponents by a staggering 13 goals to one. The competition was later replaced by the CEFACA Cup, which is still considered the oldest cup competition on the continent.

1956 – First overseas tour of England

In 1956, the national team of Uganda made its first ever overseas tour, playing 11 games over a six-week period in England. Although the team lost the majority (seven) of its matches, it did record some famous victories, including a 2-1 triumph against the United Kingdom Olympic team. The Ugandan players favored playing barefoot and actually blamed being forced to wear boots for their initial early loss to Wycombe at a deficit of 10-1.

1973 – Uganda wins CEFACA Cup for the first time

The Gossage Cup was replaced by the Challenge Cup in 1967, which itself was supplanted by the CEFACA Cup in 1973. Uganda came out on top in that inaugural tournament, toppling Tanzania 2-1 in the final. In the intervening 50 years, the competition has expanded from six teams to 12 teams, with Uganda the most successful nation in its history with 39 titles.

1978 – Runners up in the AFCON

In 1978, Uganda competed in the African Cup of Nations (AFCON) for only the fifth time in its history.

After finishing second in the group stage with two wins and a loss, Uganda defeated Nigeria 2-1 in the semis, before being edged out 2-0 by Ghana in the final.

Despite those lofty heights, it would be almost four decades before Uganda qualified for the AFCON again in 2017.

1999 – Andrew Musaka scores 45 goals in a single season

Homegrown talent Andrew Musaka was a prodigy for club and country, captaining the national side at just 20 years old in 2000. He gained that privilege in large part due to his achievements the season prior, when he scored an incredible 45 goals for FC Villa to help them to the league title – a record that still stands. Unfortunately, Musaka would not go on to fulfil his huge potential thanks to injuries and mental problems that plagued him since his youth.

2016 – Uganda reaches 62nd place in FIFA rankings

2016 is perhaps the pinnacle of Uganda’s footballing achievements to date, at least in terms defined by FIFA, the governing body of the sport worldwide. The real work was done in the last few months of the previous year, when the national team went on an incredible run of nine wins in 10 matches between October and December, leading them to attain a 62nd rank globally. At the time of writing, Uganda is currently in 89th position worldwide.

The Ugandan people have taken football to their hearts since its introduction over a century ago – and it has repaid them on numerous occasions with incredible scenes and amazing achievements.

Source: kfm.co.ug

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