Former Congo Coach Paul Put has been named Uganda Cranes New Head Coach.
FUFA President Moses Magogo announced this in a brief press conference held on Thursday morning at the FUFA Complex in Mengo. Put has signed a two-year contract.
Put who is a UEFA Pro licensed coach succeeds Morley Byekwaso who took the interim role after FUFA sacked Serbian Coach Milutin Micho Sredojevic-Micho after a disappointing Africa Cup of Nations qualifying campaign in which Uganda finished in third place with seven points.
“Please give me time, give me confidence. You will see a different national.” Put briefly said after he was unveiled.
Micho was relieved of his duties following a disappointing Africa Cup of Nations qualifying campaign, which saw Uganda finish in third place with seven points.
The 67-year-old coaching veteran now takes the helm of the Uganda Cranes just days before the commencement of the 2026 World Cup Qualifiers. Uganda’s campaign kicks off with consecutive away games against Guinea and Somalia on November 17 and 21, respectively, both hosted in Morocco.
Paul Put brings a wealth of experience to Uganda Cranes, having managed various national teams and clubs, particularly in Africa. Notably, he guided Burkina Faso to the final of the Africa Cup of Nations in 2013.
Put will work with the five people as part of his backroom staff. These include Sven De Wilde as a Performance Manager, Mathieu Denis as Physical Fitness Coach, Gery Osste as the Goalkeeping Coach, Martin Michiel as the Physiotherapist, Jelle Sevenhant as the Video analyst.
According to Magogo, the Ugandan personnel who will be part of the backroom staff will be communicated later and shall only report to camp as and when International engagements are lined up.
Magogo said they completely believe in their choice of the coach because of his wealth of experience, and as a Federation, they will give him all that he needs to achieve the best.
In September , this publication learnt that by the closure of business day on 22nd September 2023, the official closing time for the applications for the jobs of the Uganda cranes, FUFA had received 245 applicants for the Head coach job of which only 2 of the applicants were Ugandans.
Then, FUFA Spokesperson Ahmed Hussein said that they had received 34 applicants for the assistant head coach job only two were Ugandans, 24 applicants for the strength and conditioning job where only 5 were Ugandans, and seven applicants for the goalkeeping coach job where only one was a Ugandan.
Magogo said that it was a long process for FUFA to select Put because of the number of applications they received where they had to look at each one’s Curriculum Vitae.
Explaining the decision not to appoint a local coach, despite a longstanding plea by Uganda Cranes fans, Magogo said that while two Ugandans had applied, they did not meet the standards FUFA was seeking.
He noted that while there might be local coaches who meet these standards, none of them had applied for the positions, and therefore FUFA could not headhunt them.
Meanwhile, Paul Put’s appointment comes at a challenging time for the Uganda Cranes, marked by the team’s transition period. FUFA’s President has frequently urged fans to be patient during this phase.
The new head coach faces the task of harmonizing emerging young talents with experienced players, a challenge that was also faced by his predecessor, Micho.
Put will also have to rectify a few issues that Micho faced including his defensive approach to the game which made several Uganda Cranes followers criticize him.