Uganda Premier League
Mbarara City vs Express FC
Friday, 25-03-2022 @2pm
Pressure is slowly starting to build on Express FC Interim head coach James Odoch as the team is not winning games.
Since the victory over Tooro United at the start of the year, the Red Eagles have not won in eight games across all competitions (D6 L2).
Under the stewardship of Odoch, they are winless in five in all competitions (D3 L2).
Their latest defeat was at home to eternal rivals SC Villa this past Tuesday in the Uganda Cup. The loss to the Jogoos all but ended their chances of winning anything this season.
Express will start the day in 7th spot with 32 points, 17 adrift of leaders Vipers SC.
The Red Eagles last league game was the draw against URA FC in a contest that brought out the best in the players especially in the second half.
If they can replicate such a display against Mbarara City, the Red Eagles might just as well win their first game under Odoch.
However, Mbarara City will be expected to approach the contest as a final.
The Ankole Lions currently occupy 15th on the Log and know they need to win more often so as to avoid relegation at the end of the season.
With nine games to play, time is slowly running out on them and they are expected to approach each of those last games as the very last one.
Currently on 17 points, Sadiq Ssempiji’s side are four points adrift of safety but will hope those around them do not win more often than they do in the final bend.
Mbarara City are winless in their last 11 league games (D4 L7). They are currently on a two-games losing run in the league but their very last contest saw them thump Iganga Young 4-0 to book a spot in the Uganda Cup quarter finals.
Mbarara City welcome back left-back Jasper Aheebwa from injury. Jude Ssemugabi, Soulymane Bamba and Karim Ramathan are all out with injuries.
Express FC will be without a host of first-team players on Friday. Murushid Juuko, Godfrey Lwesibawa have gone AWOL and missed the last couple of games. Erick Kambale has not travelled with the team due to unexplained reasons. Mahad Yaya and Abel Etrude are also out of the contest. Enock Ssebaggala is suspended. Martin Kiiza is away with the Uganda Cranes team in Uzbekistan.
This will be the 9th meeting between the two sides since 2017. In the past eight meetings, Mbarara City have won three, Express three with the other two ending in draws. Express have lost only one of their last six meetings with Mbarara City (W2 D3). Mbarara’s only victory in that period was the 1-0 win at Wankulukuku back in February 2020. However, the Red Eagles have only ever won once away to Mbarara City (D1 L2). Last season, the two sides drew 1-1 in both of their meetings while their first meeting this campaign ended in a 2-0 victory for the Red Eagles at Wankulukuku.