Cecafa Challenge Cup: Somalia & Tanzania to field foreign-based players

Tanzania v RWanda friendly.
New Times.
The Ocean Stars and Taifa Stars have confirmed the inclusion of foreign-based players in their squads for the tournament

Somalia and Tanzania will field foreign-based players in their teams during the 2019 Cecafa Senior Challenge Cup.

The regional tournament that brings together national teams in the Council of East and Central African Football Associations (Cecafa) region will take place from December 7 to 19 in Uganda.

Heyford Basir Kweku, head coach of Somalia’s Ocean Stars said in Kampala on Tuesday some of his players have already arrived in Uganda and they are expecting others from Europe.

“We are taking this tournament very seriously because we want to perform well and keep improving in the rankings. We shall have some foreign-based players who played in the 2021 Fifa World Cup qualifier against Zimbabwe,” Kweku is quoted by Cecafa website.

Somalia have been placed in Group B alongside Sudan, South Sudan and the guest side Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Tanzania have also included Morocco-based player Nickson Kibabage, Eliud Ambokile (TP Mazembe, DR Congo) and Eliuter Mpepo (Buidcom FC, Zambia) on the squad.

Nicholas Musonye, the Cecafa secretary-general, says they expect a very competitive tournament this year since many teams have greatly improved.

“This will also be a good tournament for teams like Uganda and Tanzania to prepare ahead of the 2020 Africa Nations Championship [Chan] to take place in Cameroon in April.”

Kenya’s Harambee Stars are the defending champions after they won the last event held in 2017.

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Group A: Uganda, Burundi, Ethiopia, Eritrea

Group B: DR Congo, Sudan, South Sudan, Somalia

Group C: Kenya, Tanzania, Djibouti, Zambia