For the third game in a row, URA has played out a disappointing stalemate in the StarTimes Uganda Premier League. This time, a barren draw against the defending champions, Express FC at the Arena of Visions, Ndejje University.

The result is a continuation of the poor run of results that commenced with a home draw against Police FC, only to continue during an away encounter against SC Villa on Tuesday this week.

Coming into this fixture, however, Sam Timbe (who was only returning on the touchline after a number of fixtures away, on medical leave), had his sights set on steering the team back to winning ways.

His selection was boosted by the return of Patrick Mbowa, whose recall to the first team for Ivan Sserubiri was more or less a no-brainer. A total of four changes to the team that started against Villa were made.

The other changes saw James Alitho, Najib Fesali and Derrick Ndahiro replace Hannington Sebwalunyo, Hudu Mulikyi and Arafat Galiwango respectively.

The start to the game promised a lot with the hosts trying to force the issue, something that almost paid off in the 6th minute when Fesali sweetly met with Saidi Kyeyune’s corner kick but was disappointed to see his effort miss by a whisker.

The resultant was a midfield battle, a battle whose success or failure was shared by both sides, and the game itself looked extremely cagey. The URA forward players eventually having nothing to feed off.

The only highlight before the conclusion of the first stanza was Cromwel Rwothomio’s acrobatic effort in the 30th minute, but even it was a half-chance and didn’t materialise into something worth writing home about.

If the display in the first half was bad, the second half was worse, especially for the fact that URA struggled to create chances, and didn’t trouble the opposition goalkeeper and defence that much.

This was also manifested in the frustration the boys showed in the game, provoking the centre referee to ditch out yellow cards to a maximum of three Tax Collectors on the evening.

These included; Benjamin Nyakoojo, Viane Ssekajugo and Rwothomio. This was, by all means, a climax to what came to be a drab affair that honestly didn’t live up to the billing.

The final whistle meant that the Tax Collectors continued their bad record against Express FC, accruing from last season. It’s now five games in all competitions in the last three years that URA has failed to win against the Red Eagles.

Coming up next for Timbe’s side is a trip to the AbaBet Greenlight Stadium, Aura, where they will lock horns with Onduparaka FC, The game will be played on December 17th.

Team Lineups

URA FC XI – James Alitho, Ashraf Mandela, Derrick Ndahiro, Najib Fesali, Benjamin Nyakojo, Saidi Kyeyune, Patrick Mbowa, Viane Ssekajugo, Moses Sseruyide, Steven Mukwala, Cromwell Rwothomio

Substitutes – Alionzi Nafian, Arafat Galiwango, Farouk Katongole, Kabon Living, Mikidad Ssenyonga, Ibrahim Dada, Brian Nkuubi

John Bugembe
December 11, 2021