CECAFA Challenge Cup: Biniam Habtamu’s mistake proved costly for Ethiopia

Dar es Salaam, Tanzania – The Ethiopian national football team started the CECAFA Challenge Cup with a goal in the 24th minute from Shimeles Bekele (Hawassa Kenama), who took advantage of Ugandan defenders’ miscommunication.

However, the joy was short-lived as Uganda was awarded a penalty kick 8 minutes later after defender Alula Girma (Saint George) brought down left back Gofrey Walusimbi in the penalty box. Masaba scored from the spot to put the two teams on level. And the score stood at one piece at half time.

Two minutes into the second half, Ethiopia’s goalkeeper Binyam Habtamu made a very amateurish mistake when he dropped an easily catchable cross by Masaba. The ball fell right in front of Kisekka, who easily tapped it into the empty goal.

While the mistake was costly and demoralizing, there was enough time for the team to attack, but strangely, the Ethiopian team pulled back, attacking with just one forward.

The Ethiopian national team could have done itself a favor by winning this match, considering the many opportunities that it had. But now, it finds itself in a precarious position. Although the team still has a chance to advance, the lack of firepower and accuracy upfront at the front line leaves one guessing.

Ethiopian team line-up:

Goalkeeper: Biniam Habtamu (Dedebit FC)

Defenders: Tesfaye Alebachew (Sebeta Kenema), Yared Zenabu (Saint George), Alula Girma (Saint George), Mengistu Assefa (Dedebit FC) and Samson Mulugeta (Saint George)

Midfielders: Tafesse Solomon (Lideta Nyala), Daniel Derebe (Dedebit FC) and Oumed Oukri (Defence Force).

Group C Standing


Teams GP W D L GF GA +/- Pts


Malawi 1 1 0 0 3 2 +1



Uganda 1 1 0 0 2 1 +1



Kenya 1 0 0 0 2 3 -1



Ethiopia 1 0 0 0 1 2 -1



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