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Football

2018 University football league starts on Thursday

The chairman of University League Vincent Kisenyi (center) speaking at the launch of the 2018 edition at Kati Kati restaurant on Tuesday (Photo by Rachael Tebandeke)

Following the successful completion of the past tournaments for the University Football League since 2012, this year it has come back big and better.

The first match of the 2018 season will be played on 30th this Thursday  at the Kyambogo University home grounds as they play two time champions-Makerere University Business School, (MUBS).

YMCA will then take on Mbarara University of Science and Technology in Buwambo on the 31st this month while IUIU host Bishop Stuart on Saturday 1st September and Busitema host St. Lawrence on Sunday 2nd September.

Since the league started there has been a number of successful players grow from playing university football to becoming big stars.

These players include ,Nkumba University exciting midfielder Yassar Mugerwa who now features for an Ethiopian Club Fazil Kenema ,KCCA FC midfielder Muzamiru Mutyaba, Onduparaka FC’s duo of Vianne Sekajugo and Abel Eturude plus URA FC’s Odong Mathew, all products of Kampala University.

Others include new KCCA FC recruit Musa Essenu who featured for MUBS and Mbarara City’s Musinde Siraje formerly of Mbarara University of Science and Technology.

The chairman of University League Vincent Kisenyi said there are plans of increasing the number of teams next season from 16 to 24.

“At the end of the entire league the bottom four in each of these groups will face relegation and come next season they should be able to play against another four to qualify and we shall increase the number of competing teams from 16 to 24” said Kisenyi.

This year, the prize money has been increased from 15 to 24 million to be shared by all competing teams according to their performance.

A cash prize of 4million awaits the winner, three and two Million for the third and fourth placed teams respectively, while each of the other participating teams will part with one million.

Bottom team in each group to face ‘relegation’ as next season they will have to play a preliminary knockout stage against 4 new teams and the 4 winners of the preliminary knockout stage progress to the group stage proper.

Shafiq Bisaso’s Uganda Martyrs are the defending champions having edged Charles Ayiekho’s MUBS 2-0 in the final at Namboole.

The finals will be held on the 10th of November at the Mandela National Stadium in Namboole.

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