Mbarara City players celebrate one of their three goals against Nyamityobora in the derby last Friday. [Photo: JOHN BATANUDDE]

Uganda Premier League (Match Day 19):

Tuesday, 12th February 2019

Bright Stars Vs Mbarara City

Champions Stadium, Mwererwe (4:30 PM)

When on-fire Mbarara City Football Club hosted Bright Stars during the first round duel on 29th December 2018, the former won 2-1 at the Kakyeka Stadium, Mbarara.

Paul Mucureezi and Karim Ndugwa (back to parent club, Wakiso Giants) were on target for the Ankole Lions back then, with midfielder Augustine Kacancu getting the consolation for the visitors.

As the two clash once again, for the second round encounter, there is a lot to play for.

First, Mbarara City has indeed proven that they are this season’s revelation, sitting in an unfamiliar third place on the 16 team log with 35 points, six off the pace from the leaders KCCA.

Fred Kajoba’s Bright Stars has struggled for form, failing to win their last 9 league games with five draws against BUL, Vipers, Onduparaka, SC Villa and lately KCCCA before falling to Police, URA, Mbarara City itself and lately Tooro United at Buhinga Stadium.

Current form aside, Bright Stars is keen to avenge the first round loss, banking on their last season 1-0 hard fought win against the same opponents at the Champions Stadium, Mwererwe.

Team news:

There are no fresh injury concerns from the two camps. Bright Stars held to a goal-less draw with KCCA in their immediate past game as Mbarara City humbled nemesis entity Nyamityobora 3-0 in the much hyped Mbarara derby.

Both sides have at least a talisman on their team with record signing and current club top scorer Mucureezi in charge of the affairs at Mbarara City.

Bright Stars always look to the magic of their inspirational and hard working skipper Nelson Senkatuka for uplifting.

Other players:

Mbarara City goalkeeper Ali Kimera, defenders Hilary Mukundane, Jasper Aheebwa, Rashid Muhammad, holding midfielders Ivan Mbowa, Burundian Pistis Barenge as well as upfront players Ibrahim Orit, Ivan Eyam, Makuweth Wol and Jude Ssemugabi are Charles Livingstone Mbabazi’s trusted cards.

Bright Stars players congratulate Brian Kayanja (R) after scoring against Express Credit: © Kawowo Sports | JOHN BATANUDDE

The home side has of late fielded Benson Wegima in goal, Pius Kaggwa, Denis Ngobi, Samuel Ssekitto, Innocent Assimwe as the core defenders, Kacancu in central midfield to partner either Brian Enzema, Henry Kiwanuka, Mahad Kisekka, Methiodious Jjuugu, Dan Birikwalira John Kokas Opejo as feeders to Senkatuka and Brian Kayanja upfront.

Positive results for either side will be so beneficial in this campaign.

Bright Stars who are currently 9th with 23 points seek for maximum points to avoid any chances of slipping to the relegation zone.

Mbarara City, too, ought to win so as to close down on the six points’ gap between them and the leaders, KCCA.

Other Matches on Tuesday:

Onduparaka Vs URA – Green Light Stadium, Arua

Maroons Vs Ndejje University – Prisons Stadium, Luzira

SC Villa Vs Paidha Black Angels – Namboole

Kirinya-Jinja S.S Vs Police – Mighty Arena, Jinja

Tooro United Vs Vipers – Buhinga Stadium, Fort Portal

Top Scorers:

Bashir Mutanda (SC Villa) – 11 Goals

Juma Balinya (Police) – 11 Goals

Joel Madondo (Kirinya-Jinja S.S) – 9 Goals

Dan Muzeyi Sserunkuma (Vipers) – 9 Goals

Patrick Henry Kaddu (KCCA) – 8 Goals

Ibrahim Juma Dada (Nyamityobora) – 7 Goals

Nelson Senkatuka (Bright Stars) – 7 Goals

Rashid Agua (Maroons) – 6 Goals

Allan Kayiwa (Tooro United) – 6 Goals

Paul Mucureezi (Mbarara City) – 6 Goals

Charles Livingstone Mbabazi, Head coach Mbarara City. (Photo: David Isabirye)

All the players are physically and mentally ready for the game away to Bright Stars. We played a friendly game against Ntoda in Ntungamo on Saturday for those players who did not play full time in the derby. We are ready

Charles Livingstone Mbabazi, Head coach, Mbarara City
Bright Stars coaches Paul Kiwanuka and Fred Kajoba ought to break the 9 match win-less run Credit: © Kawowo Sports | JOHN BATANUDDE

Our league has just kicked off with the second round games. All the matches that we played in the first half of the season are long forgotten. We played Onduparaka, SC Villa, KCCA and face Mbarara City on Tuesday with the URA game next in line. It has not been an easy fixture for us but we have managed to handle the games. We respect our opponents since they beat us in Mbarara but every club that comes to Mwererwe is aware that is a real battle. They have some good players like Paul Mucureezi and their captain (Mukundane), so, we know the kind of team that we shall face.

Fred Kajoba, Bright Stars Head Coach

David Isabirye is a senior staff writer for Kawowo Sports where he covers most of the major events.

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