‘FUFA admired my coaching style’ – Says McKinstry


Uganda Cranes head coach Johnathan McKinstry has revealed that the reason why he was considered for the job ahead of everyone else was because FUFA admired his coaching style.

The 35-year-old tactician was announced as head coach of the Cranes in September 2019 replacing Sebastien Desabre who resigned from the role after the Cranes were knocked out of the 2019 AFCON tournament in Egypt.

According to the Northern Irishman, FUFA knew what he can do and what he could bring to the Uganda Cranes especially after watching him from close quarters as head coach of Rwanda’s Amavubi Stars.

“I was coach of Rwanda sometime back and Uganda and Rwanda are historical rivals. It’s like England and Scotland, their relationship goes beyond football on the pitch,” McKinstry said during an interview on the Bola Bola show.

“I did well in Rwanda and set some new milestones with the National team, and then we came up against Uganda Cranes a couple of times.”

“Uganda came out on top but we pushed them really hard to their limits both in Kampala and in Kigali, and I think that stayed with them.”

“When I applied for the job, it was not (a case of) someone just applying but someone they had come up against so they knew what a McKinstry team played like,” he added.

McKinstry further divulged that the alignment between his presentation and ideas for the Cranes project and FUFA’s vision was also an important factor for him to land the job.

“They saw the alignment between my presentation and FUFA’s vision for what football would be like in Uganda.”

“Milutin Sredojevic who helped Cranes for the 2017 AFCON, had coached Rwanda national team before taking on the Uganda team. They already had that movement across the border,” he revealed.

McKinstry was selected from a pool of 137 applicants, including Africa Cup of Nations winning coach Hugo Broos

The Northern Irishman has already tasted success with the Cranes, as he led them to a record 14th CECAFA crown in December 2019 in Kampala, winning all six games in the process.

McKinstry has been in charge of 10 games with the Cranes, and is yet to face defeat, winning nine and drawing one game. His Cranes team has scored 20 goals and conceded just twice in that period.

His overall dream with the Cranes is to seal a third successive qualification to the AFCON while also overseeing a first qualification for the FIFA World Cup.


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