Desabre's tactical reshuffle pays dividends for Uganda

Sebastien Desabre of Uganda watches on during the 2018 CHAN Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

Sebastien Desabre believes that his tactical reshuffle of Uganda's Cranes was central to their 3-0 Africa Cup of Nations victory over Lesotho on Saturday.

The East Africans had previously been winless in competitive games under the Frenchman, who was appointed in December 2017, but ended that run in some style at the Mandela National Stadium.

Desabre opted to tweak his attacking unit after a lethargic display at home against Tanzania last month, and Uganda were noticeably more vibrant going forward.

"I will keep making tactical changes on the team," Desabre told KweséESPN. "This is very important because I have to consider the condition of players ahead of a game.

"I think the switch to play [Moses] Waiswa in midfield alongside [goalscorer Farouk] Miya was good and they played well together.

"Edrisa Lubega, who started as a lone striker, performed well as he kept the Lesotho defenders busy with his quick reaction and speed."

Desabre's bold move to play Waiswa and Miya in midfield prompted the kind of interplay that the previously undefeated Basotho struggled to deal with.

Uganda created a litany of chances, with Waiswa - who'd previously played on the right side of the midfield - central to their creativity.

Two-goal Emmanuel Okwi, who previously led the line, was effective after being shifted over to the right flank, creating space for Lubega to exploit.

"We achieved our first objective, which was to win the game, and the second was to play well - we also did that," Desabre added. "I am happy with the performance, although I am already thinking of the return leg in Maseru on Tuesday."

Playing Waiswa in the centre of the midfield with Miya was more productive going forward as the Uganda Cranes created more changes.

Cranes skipper Denis Onyango vowed that his team will remain focused for next week's match, despite their superiority on Saturday.

"We know that it is not over yet," he told KweséESPN. "We deserve the win because we played well, but we need to turn our focus on the next game where we want to go and pick maximum points in Maseru."

Uganda lead Group L with seven points, while Cape Verde, who defeated Tanzania 3-0 on Friday are second on four points.

Lesotho and Tanzania, who each have two points, are placed third and fourth respectively.