AFCON 2019: Uganda Cranes players end boycott after agreeing on $6,000 cash payment

AFCON 2019: Uganda Cranes players end boycott after agreeing on $6,000 cash payment
Uganda Cranes players going through the paces in Cairo, Egypt

Uganda Cranes players finally called off their sit-down strike on Wednesday 3rd night to attend training ahead of a game against Senegal on Friday 5th in the last 16 at the on-going 2019 Total Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON).

Earlier, the state minister for Sports, Charles Bakkabulindi engaged the players in a meeting to convince them to return for training, but they refused.

It took an emergency meeting by the FUFA executive in Kampala to sit and decide that each of the players will be rewarded with $6,000 (about Shs 22 million).

The players accepted to return to training but on condition that this money is paid in cash instead of being wired to their respective accounts. The players argue that the Federation of Uganda Football Associations (FUFA) had agreed to pay the ream.

The players refused to board the bus to go for training until officials re-negotiated with them. Assistant captain Hassan Wasswa Mawanda, however, missed training since he had his tooth extracted hours earlier.

However, head coach Sebastien Desabre said the commitment of the players ahead of the game against Senegal is high.

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“We shall be playing a strong side, but we are ready to face them,” said Desabre who is reportedly a target for top Egyptian side Al Ahly.

Victory for Uganda Cranes against Africa’s best-ranked team, Senegal, will see the players earn a further $5000 (Shs 18.5 million) on top of the $14,660 (Shs 55 million) that each of them has already received since they started training for the tournament.

Meanwhile, a source in the team said that two players Allan Kateregga and Jamal Salim have also been fined for indiscipline. The South African based Kateregga reportedly insulted physical fitness trainer Gerome D’Antonio, while goalkeeper Salim disobeyed instructions.