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2018 Uganda Kobs Team

Uganda Kobs (U23)

The Uganda U23 also known as the Kobs is the top underage national Team next to the senior Team (Uganda Cranes). It’s the direct feeder of the Uganda Cranes.

It has in the past years featured in a number of qualification campaigns most notably 1999 seventh All Africa Games that were held in South Africa.

Under coach Leo Adraa assisted by Jimmy Muguwa with Tushar Ruparelia as a manager, the squad that had quite a number of talented players was captained by Andy Lule.

Uganda Kobs (1999) Squad

GOALKEEPERS: Sam Kawalya (Express), Hussein Ssali (KCC FC), Andrew Jjombwe (SC Villa)

DEFENDERS: Robert Kabanda (Scoul), Mike Jjuuko (Scoul), Ibrahim Sekagya (KCC FC), Aggrey Bigala (SC Villa), Andy Lule (Express), Abubeker Tabula (SC Villa).

MIDFIELDERS: David Lukwago (Simba), Bobic Odowa (Express), Morley Byekwaso (KCC FC), Kyambadde Willy (KCC FC), Phillip Ssozi (SC Villa), Mike Sebalinga (Nile), David Obua (Police FC), Hakim Magumba (SC Villa), Alex Isabirye (Express FC) Lawrence Musoke (KCC FC).

FORWARDS: Hassan Mubiru (SC Villa), Andrew “Fimbo” Mukasa (SC Villa), Robert Sejjemba (Police FC), Eugen Ssepuya (Mbale Heroes)

1999 Uganda Kobs Players and Officials at Nakivubo Stadium

Other influential players that were part of the qualifiers missed out in the final squad due to injury problems and others had traveled to USA.

Key players that missed All African Games:

Authur Byansiima (USA), Geoffrey Bukohore (USA), Wilber Musika (USA), James Odoch (Injury), Baker Mbowa (Injury).

Others; Harunah Mawa, Senabulya Baker, Gayi Wilson, Abed Bironse, Med Nsubuga, Henry Kabeta, Kisa Jalendo, Livingstone Mbabazi, Semanda Joseph, and David Kalungi.

The Kobs reached the Semifinals of the All African Games losing to Cameroon 1-0.


Uganda Kobs were in Group A with hosts South Africa, Mali and Algeria.

Group Games:

9th Sept 1999 – Uganda Kobs 2-0 Mali

(Morley Byekwaso and Willy Kyambadde Scored for Kobs)

11th Sept 1999 – Algeria 2-0 Uganda

13th Sept 1999 – Uganda 0-0 South Africa

Uganda Kobs finished 2nd with 4 points.

Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts
 South Africa 3 2 1 0 6 1 +5 7
 Uganda 3 1 1 1 2 2 0 4
 Algeria 3 1 0 2 2 4 −2 3
 Mali 3 1 0 2 3 6 −3 3


17th Sept 1999Cameroon 1-0 Uganda Kobs

The game ended 0-0 in normal time. Cameroon scored in the 18th minute of the extra time.

The Kobs lost to South Africa 2-0 in the third-place playoff  0n 19th Sept 1999.


12 years later, the Kobs yet again made it to 2011 All Africa games this time in Maputo, Mozambique under coach George Ssimwogerere assisted by George Nsimbe.

The Kobs were pitted in group B along with West African giants Cameroon and Senegal in which they only managed one point from two games.

5th Sept 2011Uganda 0-0 Cameroon

8th Sept 2011 – Uganda 1-2 Senegal

(Sadam Juma Scored Kobs Goal)

The Kobs finished fifth overall out of the six teams that took part in the final tournament

These draws weren’t enough to see the team through to the knock-out stages. But having beaten Tanzania 5-2 on aggregate before humbling Kenya 5-1 in the first leg in Nairobi, Uganda was showing ruthlessness even at the under-age competitions in East Africa.

The full Uganda Kobs squad that went to Maputo.

Goalkeepers: Benjamin Ochan (SC Villa), Ali Kimera (Victors), Robert Odongkara (St. George).

Defenders: Saka Mpiima (KCC), Ivan Bukenya (Proline), Denis Guma, Ayub Kisalita (SC Villa), Godfrey Walusimbi, Habib Kavuma, Ronald Ssaku (Bunna), Isaac Isinde (St. George)

Midfielders: Ceasar Sapeo (KCC), Mike Mutyaba, Owen Kasule (Bunna), Juma Sadam, Moses Oloya (Sai Gon, Vietnam) Ntambi Crizestom (Navi, Vietnam) Isaac Kirabira (SC Villa), Sula Matovu (St George),

Strikers: Patrick Edema (Proline), Edirisa Kaye (SC Villa), Hamis Kiiza (Yanga), Emmanuel Okwi (Simba, Tanzania).

2016 Olympics Qualifiers

Four years later the Kobs coached by Milutin Sredejovic and skippered by Faruku Miya returned in the African U-23 championship/Olympic qualifiers and defeated Rwanda over two legs in the first qualification round before falling 6-1 on aggregate to Egypt.

2019 AFCON Qualifiers

In 2018, the Kobs side coached by Wasswa Bbosa and Skippered by Musitafa Mujuzi failed at the first hurdle of the 2019 AFCON U23 qualifiers when the team shockingly lost 2-1 on aggregate to South Sudan.

Uganda Kobs Team that played against South Sudan in 2018

The squad that played South Sudan

Goalkeepers: Tom Ikara, Saidi Keni

Other players:
Musitafa Mujuzi, Musitafa Kizza, Ashiraf Mugume,Geoffrey Wasswa, Lawrence Bukenya, Bashir Asiku, Shafik Kuchi Kagimu, Allan Okello, Joel Madondo, Steven Desse Mukwala, Rashid Toha, Julius Poloto, Joseph Junior Semujju, Alex Komakech, Ezekiel Duncan Sseninde, Trevor Ssemakula


Head coach: Charles Wasswa Bbosa

Assistant coach: Charles Ayiekoh Lukula

Goalkeeper Trainer: Wassa Sadiq

Team Physician: Yahaya Katumba

Team coordinator: Joseph Kasana

Media officer: Farid Mpagi

Delegates: Farouk Kigongo Semakula and John Bosco Masiko

CECAFA U23 Challenge Cup 2021

The Uganda Kobs took part in the 2021 CECAFA U23 Challenge Cup in Ethiopia. This was after CECAFA decided to change from the Senior edition and instead have a Championship of players under the age of 23.

Uganda was pooled in Group A alongside Tanzania and DR Congo. The first game for the Kobs came on 18th July 2021 against DR Congo, ending in a goalless draw.

Najib Yiga and Ivan Bogere celebrate a goal

The other group game against Tanzania also ended in a one-all draw with Steven Mukwala scoring for Uganda.

The team, however could not qualify out of the group stages and only settled for a 5th place after defeating DR Congo and Eritrea. 

Against DR Congo, Najib Yiga scored the lone goal of the game. He also scored in the final classification game, where Uganda overcame Eritrea 2-1. Steven Mukwala scored the other.

Uganda U23 Games

Group Games

DR Congo 0-0 Uganda
Uganda 1-1 Tanzania
Classification Games
Uganda 1-0 DR Congo (7th/8th place)
Uganda 2-1 Eritrea (5th/6th place)
Najib Yiga joins Steven Mukwala in celebrations

2023 Africa-U23 Cup of Nations

Uganda was supposed to face Guinea in the first round of the Qualifiers but FUFA was forced to withdraw the team due to lack of funds.