Our soccer pundit previews the AFCON Group A clash between DRC and Uganda which takes place on Saturday 22 June 2019.
The likes of Denis Onyango, Godfrey Walusimbi and Allan Kateregga will be looking to propel underdogs, Uganda, to greatness while the likes of West Ham’s Arthur Masuaku, FC Porto’s Chancel Mbemba and Anderlecht’s Yannick Bolasie will be looking to get the favourites’ campaign off to a good start.
DR Congo vs Uganda
Saturday 22 June
Cairo International Stadium
DR Congo 15/20
The star-studded DR Congo squad will be looking to win arguably their easiest game of the group. They had start striker, Dieumerci Mbokani, pulling out due to injury but that will not be so costly as they have the likes of Bolasie, Cedric Bakambu, and Tresor Mputu in their arsenal. The likes of left-back Arthur Masuaku will add the much-needed experience at the back.
DRC finished second in their qualifying group which comprised Zimbabwe, Liberia and Congo – and they only collected three points away from home. It shall be very interesting to see how they fare on Egyptian soil where most of their players who play their club football for AS Vita Club and TP Mazembe have faced the likes of Al Ahly and Zamalek. Egyptian conditions might also favour their Europe-based players.
The Ugandan squad boasts Denis Onyango who is considered the best goalkeeper in the continent after making the 2018 African Team of the Year twice. In 2016, he was crowned the best African footballer based in the continent in Mamelodi Sundowns’ CAF Champions League-winning year. South African fans will also be treated to watching former Kaizer Chiefs left-back, Godfrey Walusimbi and Maritzburg United’s exciting attacker Allan Kateregga.
They come into this game as 38/10 underdogs which means they have little or no pressure to deliver. A bulk of their players ply their trade in this continent while those who play overseas are not in any of the major leagues. I can say they somewhat had it easy in the qualifiers as their group contained Tanzania, Lesotho and Cape Verde.
Verdict: DR Congo (15/20)
I expect Uganda to hold their own but I don’t see them coming away with something in this encounter as DRC are more experienced in the tournament. Back the favourites to triumph here.
Written by @EggsBenedictZA