Amuneke guides Tanzania to first AFCON in 39 years

Author: Rosalind K. Amoh
Emmanuel Amuneke makes AFCON history with Tanzania
Emmanuel Amuneke makes AFCON history with Tanzania

 Tanzania have ended their Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) drought by picking their first qualification after 39 years, beating East Africa rivals, Uganda 3-0 in Dar es Salaam on Sunday in the final game of the qualifying campaign.

Coached by former Nigeria international, Emmanuel Amuneke, the Taifa Stars  stunned Group L leaders, the Cranes, to record an historic victory in front of home fans at the National Stadium and  return to the AFCON for the first time since 1980.

Goals from Simon Msuwa, Erasto Nyoni and Aggrey Morris helped the Taifa Stars secure their place among the 24 teams heading for Egypt for the tournament in June, in Egypt as they displaced Lesotho to finish second in the group log with eight points from six games.

Despite the loss, Uganda finished on top of the group and have also qualified for the tournament.

The victory is no means a  huge success  for Amuneke's coaching credentials having guided Nigeria's youth team to similar success and took up the appointment as Tanzania head coach just last August.

 Amuneke also becomes the second Nigerian coach, after late Stephen Keshi [with Togo and Nigeria], to guide a country other than his, to Africa's biggest football tournament, which has switched date from January-February to June-July and will have an expanded number of 24 teams.

2019 AFCON qualifiers

Group L

Match Day 6 results
Tanzania 3, Uganda 0
Cape Verde 0, Lesotho 0

Final standings
Team             P    W    D    L    GF    GA    GD    PTS
Uganda          6    4     1    1     7      3      4     13
Tanzania        6    2     2    2     6      5      1       8
Lesotho         6    1     3    2     3      7     -4      6
Cape Verde    6    1     2    3     4      5     -1      5