KAMPALA. SC Villa and Onduparaka at Namboole this evening brings together two of the most supported clubs in the country.
Record national champions with 16 titles, SC Villa, started the 2018/19 StarTimes Uganda Premier League (SUPL) with an away 2-2 draw, while emerging force Onduparaka easily dispatched Nyamityobora 2-0 in Aria.
Today they come face to face with new men in Moses Basena and Asaph Mwebaze in charge.
While it is an upward trajectory for Onduparaka, who finished fifth and fourth respectively in their first two years of top flight football, it is a rebuilding process at Villa.
But even then, there is still hunger as showed in Basena’s disappointment at dropping two points in Jinja.
Ordinarily, a point at Charles Ayiekoh’s Kirinya-Jinja is a valuable one as most teams will attest, but the fact that Villa were winning when Joel Madondo completed his brace left a bitter taste in Basena’s mouth.
“That is what we have to guard against when we face Onduparaka,” Basena explained to Daily Monitor.
“When you are leading in that manner, you must be able to close out the game.
“If you want to put up a decent run, you can’t concede two goals in 90 minutes. “We have to look at what we didn’t do right and correct it as we continue the rebuilding process.”
Basena’s opposite Asaph Mwebaze believes victory over Villa could go some distance in making clear their intentions.
“It could easily signify our intentions,” he said, “And if we are to be serious title contenders, this is a kind of team to beat.
“If we beat Villa, it leaves us in a better state because we face KCCA after that.”
Elsewhere, Bright Stars striker Nelson Ssenkatuka says it is teams like Nyamityobora they must beat if they are to achieve the top five finish. “Against Maroons, we should have kept a clean sheet and scored more goals,” said Ssenkatuka, who ridiculously scored twice in that 3-1 victory.
“So Nyamityobora game is very important for us because we have to beat promoted teams and those around us for us to tear clear.”
“That meant a big win for us and the players themselves,” Kalule reminisces.
It’s not only Janjali and Yiga, who reaped big out of this tournament. Uganda Cranes superstars: Emma Okwi, Yunus Ssentamu and Farouk Miya but a few, all improved their profiles after playing for their respective County teams.
The tournament, however, is not eligible for Uganda Premier League and Fufa Big League licensed players. The rules also state that no team is entitled to sign three players from a single team at a go.
TODAY’S UPL FIXTURES
SC Villa vs. Onduparaka
M. National Stadium Namboole, 4PM TV
Nyamityobora vs. Bright Stars,
Muteesa II Stadium Wankulukuku 4:30PM
Paidha Black Angels vs. Police,
Green Light Stadium
Ndejje University vs. Mbarara City,
Arena of Visions