URA FC visit Vipers SC in Buikwe for a crunch league tie that could have a lot of bearing on the outcome of the league title race in these closing weeks as JOHN VIANNEY NSIMBE reports…
On Friday, Vipers SC were able to see off army-side Simba SC 2-0 courtesy of goals from Julius Malingumu and Farouq Miya. But the other two immediate title chasers, KCCA FC and SC Villa also won, 2-0 over SCVU and 3-1 over Lweza FC respectively.
However, now that the league table leaders Vipers SC are 14 points ahead of URA FC, there is a sense that the taxmen are unlikely to be interested in going out full throttle since their title ambitions appear to have gone up in smoke when they failed to beat Villa a few days ago.
Or could they actually have something left in the tank to throw a spanner into the works by handing the baton for possible league triumph to KCCA and Villa in this final bend if they register a result in Buikwe?
“As much as we don’t seem to be close enough to the top of the table, as a team we have not given up on the title,” said URA midfielder, Yasser Mugerwa.
He added: “With eight games still left to play, we must aim at finishing as high up as possible. And knowing the surprises that happen in football, we must keep around, ready to pick up the pieces in case the ones ahead of us drop points in the next few games.”
At the moment, URA lie fourth on 38 points while Vipers are on 52 but closely looking over their shoulders as KCCA and Villa on 50 and 49 points respectively breathe down their neck. But even with that seeming gulf in class at present, URA are up for this clash for various reasons. In the first round tie between the two teams, following a 2-0 lead, Vipers pegged back URA to share the spoils.
This didn’t only showcase Vipers’ undying spirit, but it also exposed URA’s lack of character and resolve that put paid to their title ambitions. It was against such results that Vipers were able to grow their confidence, as a real spring in their step was generated.
Until recently, match-day 21, Vipers had been the only club in the league that had not lost a game. And by then, their form appeared to suggest a derailment from their title ambitions. But following their 2-0 win over Entebbe that was followed by the win over Simba, coach Edward Golola is upbeat.
“My players are in good shape, and they know what is at stake. So, they are ready to give it their all,” Golola reasoned. But considering URA’s recent showing on the continent, one would think that they are in better stead than Vipers.
With Mugerwa, Moses Feni, a hat-trick hero against Sadolin Paints FC a week ago, and Saidi Kyeyune, Vipers have their work cut out.
But Golola said: “I have midfielders equally as good if not better in Keziron Kizito, Allan Kyambadde, Miya, Mike Mutyaba and Saddam Juma. And all of them are goal-scorers.
“With such quality and being at home, we are confident and doubt URA can take any point away from us.”
Not the kind of thing KCCA and Villa will want to hear at this juncture.
Uganda Premier League
Vipers v URA
Sadolin v BUL
Rwenshama v Police
SCVU v Lweza
Simba v Entebbe
Source : The Observer