Pilsner Super 8
Mbarara City vs URA FC
Kakyeka Stadium, Mbarara
URA FC head coach Sam Simbwa has cautioned referees to be ‘fair’ when his side takes on Mbarara City in the Pilsner Super 8 on Friday.
The Tax Collectors and Ankole Lions clash in the second match of this year’s pre-season tournament but Simbwa is already worried about who the officials will handle the game.
“The referees are always biased in favour of Mbarara to the extent of counting wrong goals,” said Ssimbwa at the pre-match press conference on Thursday.
“We think if we get fair officiating, different from previous times we visited Mbarara, I think we will come out victorious.”
URA FC head into the game as slight favourites after finishing ahead of Mbarara in the 2018/19 StarTimes Uganda Premier League. The Tax Collectors ended the season in 3rd, two spots ahead of Mbarara City (5th).
They (URA) have been on a major spending spree, bringing in upto 13 new players already.
The likes of Ibrahim Dada Juma,John Ssemazzi, Anwar Ntege, Ashiraf Mandela, Samuel Mwaka, Brian Majwega, Ivan Sserubiri, Mikdad Senyonga,Ivan Ntege and Hassan Kalega are some of the new faces that have come in and a host of them are expected to take part in Friday’s game.
However, URA will also be without three key players in captain Shafick Kagimu, goalkeeper James Alitho and defender Patrick Mbowa. The trio is currently with the Uganda Cranes CHAN team that is preparing for their return leg qualifiers’ clash against Somalia on Sunday.
About the absentees, Simbwa had this to say;
“We wanted to take this trophy but we are lacking some of our best players who are with the national team.
“We thought our game also could have been called off as that of KCCA FC. We had prepared very well but our best players are on the national team.”
Simbwa had initially called for the game to be postponed but FUFA declined his call. KCCA FC who have upto 8 players in the CHAN team, saw their clash with Wakiso Giants pushed to Tuesday next week.
For Mbarara City, they have been silent in the transfer window as the main focus was to replace Livingstone Mbabazi.
Mbabazi who was at the helm as the Ankole Lions finished 5th last season, terminated his contract towards the end of May leaving the head coach’s role vacant. However, he has been replaced by former Paidha Black Angels and Synergy tactician Brian Ssenyondo whose first competitive fixture comes against URA FC.
Mbarara will look to star-player Paul Mucurezi to try and get them past the Tax Collectors.
New signings Solomon Okwalinga, Gadafi Gadinho and Bashir Muwesi are expected to take part in the game.
This will be the 5th meeting between the two sides ever since Mbarara made their lastest return to the top tier in 2017.
In the previous four matches, the two sides have drawn all four games including a 0-0 stalemate in their latest duel.
The two matches that have been hosted by Mbarara in that period have all ended 1-1.
The first game of this year’s Pilsner Super 8 saw Vipers SC defeat Proline FC 1-0 at Lugogo on Wednesday afternoon.
Pilsner Super Eight:
July 31, 2019
-Vipers SC 1-0 Proline FC
August 2, 2019
-Mbarara City FC Vs URA FC
August 4, 2019
-Onduparaka FC vs Tooro
August 6, 2019
-Wakiso Giants vs KCCA FC