Micho begins work in earnest as Cranes coach

There was a sense of awkwardness at the Fufa house in Mengo, as Engineer Moses Magogo officially announced the appointment of new Uganda Cranes coach, Milutin ‘Micho’ Sredojevic on Tuesday 3rd August.

It was around the same time in 2017, that Magogo was defending Fufa, following a somewhat acrimonious departure of Micho from the Cranes job. At that time, Fufa had been made to look bad for failing to clear Micho’s arrears. Yet, Magogo, who did not deny it, noted that they were not the first football association to have debts.

But at the same time, was bullish, insisting that they would clear Micho to his last penny.

As expected, the questions around Micho’s relationship with Fufa were at the forefront, as the media try to put the Serbian tactician in a corner, as if to suggest, that his return was an act of hypocrisy. However, Micho did not mince his words in response, apologizing for what may have been misinterpreted in 2017. But at the same time said that he was back to do his best, to ensure that Cranes is competitive.

“We have the 2022 World Cup qualifiers coming up. So, we have to prepare well and see that we are competitive enough. In football, you are as good as your next game. No one remembers what we did previously. The fans will only want to see Cranes do well now, and not how much they did previously,” Micho said.

For all intents and purposes, the former Orlando Pirates coach emphasized that nothing about his former exploits would mean a thing, if his team did not perform well. He noted that he was not oblivious of the fact that so much had changed about the current Cranes team from the previous one he coached, where the likes of Geoffrey Massa, Tonny Mawejje and Denis Onyango were still playing for the team.

That said, Micho boasted that despite the changes, he knew most of the new Ugandan footballers, something he believes would enable him settle in quickly.

It is against that fact that Magogo felt Micho was the best man for the job: “Picking a good coach is one of the hardest job for a Fufa President. But I believe that Micho returns a more experienced coach and with more football knowledge. At the same time Micho finds a more organized and financially stable Fufa.”

Perhaps this was one well hidden message, that suggested issues of Micho’s salary not being paid on time, was a matter of the past. So was the possibility of Micho picking Moses Basena as his assistant. Instead, Micho picked Livingston Mbabazi as the lead member of his backroom stuff. Others are two foreign individuals and Fred Kajoba, the goalkeeping coach from Micho’s previous reign.

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