The Uganda Premier League (UPL) could not have returned at a better time. After yet another energy sapping and failed Nations Cup qualifying campaign, what they wanted was a quick switch of mind and it never disappointed with plenty of fantastic goals on Friday.
SC Villa remained second in the with 19 points after thrashing Kira Young 3-0 at Ssaza Grounds in Mityana on Friday.
Midfield player Steven Bengo struck from the penalty spot while Moses Gaale and Karim Ndugwa scored the others as the 16-time record champions stayed a point adrift of table leaders Vipers.
The Jogoos took the lead just after eight minutes when Bengo was fouled by Brian Nkubi in the forbidden area.
The Villa darling picked himself up to send Kira goalkeeper Moses Ssemakula the wrong way.
Kira reacted by staging a counter-attack that involved Nkubi and captain Baker Lukooya but Banda Ssemwogerere shot just wide.
But it was Villa that seized the initiative to double the lead in the 19th minute when Nigerian Victor Emenayo raced past Tangauzi Wilson and slotted the ball across the face of goal for an on-rushing Gaale to make it 2-0.
The second half started with Kira looking to rescue the game and actually had the ball in the net, but Banda’s effort was ruled out for offside.
Both sides had a fair share of chances until the 76th minute when Villa got their third goal.
Striker Ndugwa found a way past three Kira defenders before beating Ssemakula with a low shot to his left. It was Ndugwa’s fourth of the season.
Kira never gave up, their pressure only soaked by Villa custodian Nicholas Ssebwato, who had to make two quick-fire saves from Nkubi and Patrick Kaddu to keep a clean sheet.
Sports Club Victoria University (SCVU) continued their mini revival with an emphatic 3-1 victory over bottom side Rwenshama at Namboole.
Martin Mpuuga, Yasser Mugerwa and David Ndihabwe scored for the university side while Ochola Deogratious grabbed Rwenshama’s consolation.
The victory, the third in nine games for SCVU, has coach Morley Byekwaso’s side in ninth with 12 points.
For Rwenshama, who alongside Soana are the only ones of the 16 teams without a win, defeat only intensified their relegation fears. They have just two points from eight games.
At Lugogo, coach Fred Kajoba lost his second straight game in charge of Bright Stars as they fell 1-0 to Sadolin Paints. Ngobi Umar scored the game’s only game.
At Kavumba Recreational Ground, coach Kefa Kisala’s Bul edged Soana 2-1 with Ivan Lubale and Davis Kasirye scoring the goals. Hamis Kitagenda got Soana’s consolation. In the other game played at Nakivubo, Entebbe held Police goalless.
Express won their sixth game of the campaign as they edged Lweza 2-1 at Wankulukuku on Friday to stay third on the table.
Lwanga Taddeo and Simon Sserunkuma scored for the six-time champions while Rajab Kakooza netted Lweza’s consolation.
Victory keeps the Red Eagles third and level on 19 points with SC Villa after nine games while defeat for Lweza has the newcomers a place above relegation with just nine points.
Coach Wasswa Bbosa’s Express took the lead in the first half through Taddeo before Sserunkuma grabbed the winner.
Lweza thought Kakooza’s goal would give them impetus to rescue a point but the Red Eagles held on for all three.
KCC kept up to speed with pace setters when they beat Simba 2-0 at Bombo.Strikers Herman Wasswa and Brian Umony scored the defending champions’ goals either side of the half.
Victory for KCC see coach George Nsimbe’s sees them stay fourth with 17 points, two behind Villa and Express and three adrift of leaders Vipers. Simba, who are on a losing trail, are 11th with ten points from nine games.
Wasswa gave the visitors the lead in the first half before Umony, who is just back in the country from having trials at professional football, put the game beyond reach for Simba.
Vipers allowed SC Villa to close in on them after playing to a 2-2 draw with URA in a game played at Lugazi on Friday. Frank Kalanda scored a brace for URA while Vincent Kayizzi and Joseph Mpande netted for the visitors.
Coach Edward Golola’s side, who have dropped just four points out of a possible 24, stay top of the standings with 20.
But in drawing they allowed Villa, 3-0 winners over Kira Young, to close Vipers lead to just one. Villa have, however, played a game more.
Kalanda grabbed his brace in the first half but Kayizzi’s strike ensured Vipers went into the break with hope.
And they finally got their well-earned point after the break when Mpande pounced to deny coach Alex Isabirye’s side all three points.