Uganda Police Football Club was once again at it with a well deserving home point off Uganda Premier League record champions SC Villa on Wednesday at MTN Omondi stadium.
Much as Police displayed a well spirited fight in a game of two halves, the Cops would only manage just a point and will ruin the many missed opportunities created going forward.
SC Villa claimed a good portion of ball possession in the opening stanza and created many chances thank to goalkeeper Tom Ikara who had a superb evening pulling out decent saves.
Ikara rose to the occasion spilling defender Geoffrey Wasswa’s distant free-kick into a wasted corner and later denied Muhammad Senoga’s constant threatening attempts.
Midway through the game, Head coach Abdallah Mubiru was forced to withdraw Fahad Kizito as skipper Tony Mawejje filled the void to control the mid of the pack. His partnership with Yusuf Ssozi was a joy to watch thereafter.
Sports Club Villa came close once again but defender Henry Katongole intercepted Isaac Ogwang’s shot outside.
Ben Ocen later ventured form the left and played through Mawejje who had weaker shot was dealt with by goalie Muhammad Ssenkooto while Edward Kiryowa’s swift corner went begging as the halftime report read goalless.
Before the second half would commence, promising midfielder Kiryowa and right winger Muwada Mawejje paved way for Duncan Senninde and Herman Wasswa Nteza as Police made further reinforcements in the offensive.
Nteza’s stepping onto the pitch put life back in the game as he made a busy day in office for left back Derrick Ndahiro alongside defenders Asuman Harishe and Geoffrey Wasswa.
Nteza attempted to cause harvock in Villa’s final third with his well executed header going just inches wide and later stretched Villa’s debutant goalkeeper Martin Ssenkooto into a save.
In the 57th minute, the visitors went into the lead deadlock when Sadam Masereka out-possessed Henry Katongole with an initial push and set-up Nicholas Kabonge who made pocked home beyond stretching Ikara.
SC Villa’s Joy was however, cut short by game changer Herman Wasswa who drew matters level three minutes after. He ventured from the right and sent a low drive which was poorly cleared by Harishe before the attacker latched onto the loose ball that sailed to the top roof of the net.
Forward Brian Muluuli would have won it late for the Cops but his header hit the extreme end of the goal post before Villa reacted with a timely clearance. Wasswa later sent a swift delivery to Senninde who put the ball just few inches wide.
As the game approached it’s bend, Police was reduced to ten men when center referee Shamira Nabadda sent off goalkeeper Ikara with a direct red card for infringement.
The lanky shot stopper advanced from his box and dived to deny onrushing Villa striker with the ball hitting his chest for a through in. Nabadda however issued a send off to Ikara leaving Police with ten players.
Mubiru would then sacrifice right back Tony Kiwalazi for second choice goalie Derrick Ochan as Villa’s resultant free-kick was tamed by the Cops backline.
Police remained 6th on 39 points after matchday 25 and we shall visit Mbarara City on Saturday at Kakyeka stadium.
Head Coach Abdallah Mubiru’s reactions after the game.
“Most of the members are beginning to loose confidence so our main concern is about our attack. Unfortunately we leak in goals so our performance is still disappointing, but we just need to work hard and try to rectify. Much as circumstances are not in our favor because every single match we play now, we get more injuries but we play to God to guide us.”Abdallah Mubiru
On goalkeeper Tom Ikara’s red card, the Uganda Cranes Interim manager felt the decision was a tricky one that had to go either side.
“It is quite a tricky one. I just had to first watch the video and realized that it wasn’t a handball but at the beginning you could not tell, so I can’t blame the referee. It’s something that had to go either side.”
“Maybe we could complain about the goal for Villa, I think my defender (Henry Katongole) was pushed and it would have been a foul in our favor but all in all, I’m contended with the officiating of the match and I don’t have any complaint.”Abdallah Mubiru
The gaffer however, decried bad morals from the wild Sports Club Villa fans who kept uttering obscene words which were demeaning to his respectable personality and profession.
“I would like to help us about the fans who come to the pitches and start uttering obscene words. We are in a civilized society and so I’m very disappointed with the Villa administration because they haven’t started today. It was the same scenario in our first game in Bombo and I think they should come out and fight it becauy it’s a very bad gesture.”Abdallah Mubiru
How The Cops Lined up against SC Villa
Tom Ikara (GK), Tony Kiwalazi, Eric Ssenjobe, Hassan Mahmood, Henry Katongole, Fahad Kizito, Edward Kiryowa, Muwadda Mawejje Yusuf Ssozi, Brian Muluuli, Ben Ocen
Substitutes: Derrick Ochan, Reuben Kimera, Duncan Senninde, Tony Mawejje, Mubarak Nsubuga, Herman Wasswa Nteza, Joseph Sentume