By Rajub Senoga Sinan
FOOTBALL. Ugandan champions KCCA edged African giants Club Africain 2-1 in the CAF Confederation Cup Group A match at the Phillip Omondi Stadium yesterday to bounce back from a disappointing 3-0 opening fixture loss at the hands of FUS Rabat in Morocca a fortnight ago.
Mike Mutebi’s men had to come from a goal behind to muscle out the 1991 African champions. The Tunisian giants had taken the lead inside the first 20 minutes of the game through Algerian right back Mokhtar Belkhiter.
A loss would all but left the hosts needing a miracle in a group that also features Nigerian side Rivers United. But coach Mike Mutebi had his players maintain their composure in the face of pressure passing with confidence as they chased down the result they sought.
The signs of the reward first showed when striker Derrick Nsibambi scored headed home Denis Okot’s cross in the added time of the first half effectively opening the Ugandan side’s goal account in the continental showpiece history.
KCCA returned for the second half more determined to get the result they yearned for, probing the visitors for space. Sixteen minutes into the second half, highflying midfielder Tom Masiko netted the second and what turned out to be the winner with a stunning shot to send the stadium wild.
KCCA held on the lead despite both sides missing vital chances.
The Kasasiro Boys return in continental engagements with a home encounter against Rivers United early next month.
Infantino congratulates league champions
The remarkable win comes in a jiffy after the Lugogo-based club receiving a congratulatory message from FIFA president Gianni Infantino.
Infantino sent the congratulatory message to the newly-crowned champions upon their 12th league triumph through Fufa president Moses Magogo.
KCCA claimed the league title with two games to spare a fortnight ago after defeating relegation candidates Lweza fc 2-0 at the Phillip Omondi stadium. However, they had to wait until the last game of the season to officially receive the trophy.
In his congratulatory message, Infantino said, “lt gives me great pleasure to send my warmest congratulations to KCCA FC for their 12 championship title overall. This title is the result of the determination of everyone involved and my congratulations go to the players, the coach, the administration, the entire technical and medical staff as well as the fans for this great achievement.
“On behalf of the entire football community, l would Iike to thank KCCA FC and your Association for helping to spread the positive message of football.”
Kcca has been invincible throughout the season collecting a tally of 66 points and have a semi final in the Uganda Cup against Express fc around the corner with a chance of attaining a double an accomplishment the club has never achieved.