SC Villa 3-2 Express
Abdulmalick Vitalis Tabu scored the winner from the spot as SC Villa moved to second place with a hard fought 3-2 win over bitter rivals Express at Namboole.
Other SC Villa goals came from Umar Kasumba while the Red Eagles’ goals were scored by Ibrahim Saddam Juma and Simon Sserunkuma.
In a fiercely contested game, it should have been 1-1 just inside the first minute after Godfrey Lwesibawa nearly scored but at the other end, Herman Wasswa hit the cross bar.
But it wasn’t long before the deadlock was broken by Saddam Juma. The midfielder’s through ball to Isaac Sserunkuma was cleared by goalie Yasin Mugabi only for the clearance to get back at Saddam who made no hesitation but shoot home into an empty net.
Three minutes later, Kirya should have levelled matters for the hosts but headed inches wide of goal from a Lwesibawa long throw in.
Ten minutes later, Kasumba levelled matters with a beautiful finish after a long ball from his defence fell on Bob Kasozi foot and straight into the striker’s path.
He made no mistake but curl a low effort past the advancing Express’ goalie to send the Jogoos’ fans into frenzy.
The ex-Police striker, who before the game was scoreless in the league doubled his and SC Villa’s tally with a headed goal of Godfrey Lwesibawa cross from the right as the hosts ended the half on top.
Express’ Wasswa Bbosa made a double swoop after the break with Allan Kyambadde and Simon Sserunkuma replacing the inefficient Richard Kigozi and John Semazzi respectively.
The move nearly paid immediate dividends as Sserunkuma beat the offside trap and on the byline, passed to Saddam who failed to keep his attempt from close range as the Jogoos survived.
Herman Wasswa also had an attempt in the 48th minute saved by his former teammate Yasin Mugabi and he also had to be at his best to deny Isaac Sserunkuma who had now shifted to a centre role to partner Wasswa.
In the 57th minute, Shafik Bisaso’s men had a genuine penalty shout turned down after Farouk Matovu tagged Alex Kitaata’s shirt in the area.
Kyambadde also had a chance to level the tie on the hour mark but missed from close range before Wasswa forced another save from Mugabi.
Mike Mutyaba then came on for right back Sam Senkoomi as the Red eagles pushed for a leveller and in the 67th minute, he assisted Sserunkuma to make it 2-2.
The team captain rounded off right back Joseph Nsubuga and his well weighed cross was met by Sserunkuma who slotted home off the volley.
But the Red half’s joy vanished after just five minutes as SC Villa earned a penalty which Tabu put away.
Lwesibawa beat his man, Hassan Mood on the edge but just inside the area, he was fouled by Matovu and referee Brian Nsubuga pointed to the spot.
Tabu, a new signing from Onduparaka took his breath before sending Kiggundu the wrong way.
He celebrated his goal at the side of the visiting fans who pelted him with bottles and also stadium seats as the game stopped for a while.
On resumption, the visitors remained calm and kept knocking on the door and they thought they had snatched a point when Wasswa’s diving header hit the back of the net but the assistant referee’s flag for offside had gone up.
The final whistle was a relief to the hosts who celebrated not only beating their rivals but the three points saw them move to within four points of leaders KCCA who they play on Tuesday at Phillip Omondi stadium, Lugogo.
SC Villa, with a game in hand have 21 points after 10 games while Express remain 7th with 14 points.