Proline’s victory, a reality check for Wakiso Giants

Daniel NSUBUGA

The pre match hype prior to the FUFA Big league play off final suggested that Wakiso Giants were going to be overwhelming favourites to lift the 2018/19 championship.

They entered Philip Omondi Stadium with swagger in their newly unveiled state of the art bus, clad in top class truck suits and they were the envy of all onlookers awaiting to witness the much coveted final.

Enter the pitch, It was Proline instead who bossed the affairs and their beautiful blend of football won over the neutrals who had filled the stadium to capacity.

Before the first half ended, Proline through Bright Anukani who was later named MVP of the season had gone in front through a well built up goal that was knitted from defence through the silky Noordin Bunjo passed the helpless Yasin Mugabi.

Ivan Bogere and Bright Anukani have developed through the ranks at Proline

The Purple Sharks tried to play catch up but they were always going to be second best as Proline continued to control the affairs.

This left many observers like your’s truly with questions like, how are the new darlings of the beautiful game going to cope with the pressure at the top? Will they stay? Or are they going to live up to the billing?.

Here are some of the questions and their answers

DO THEY NEED TO CHANGE A PLAYING STYLE?

Not really, word around town is that Ibrahim Kirya will be replaced by Abdallah Mubiru who plays a more sexy brand of football.

As witnessed on Saturday, Wakiso Giants were overrun, out possessed and over competed by Proline who employed a more pressing advanced game.

The Elgon group champions tried to play to the tune of their opponents but they were left to chase shadows during large spells of the match.

In the regular season, they won many games using a more direct approach and they should have stuck to it if they were going to counter Proline.

Bright stars have been christened the Stoke City of Uganda because they win ugly but who cares anyway? , they have not been relegated from the league since their elevation to the top flight in the 2012/13 season.

Play to your strength and play it safe.

DO THEY NEED TO CHANGE COACH?

No, to be true to ourselves, the owners and administrators at Wakiso Giants are self acclaimed enthusiasts of a fluid , possessional and high pressing style of football that is only coached by a limited class of coaches in Uganda.

Mike Mutebi is occupied at KCCA and Abdallah Mubiru remains the only viable candidate to snap up judging by the limited budget with which he operates at Police FC.

Who would not want to toy with the big resources at the disposal of Wakiso Giants?

But if employed, Abdallah should not be lured into rapidly trying to embroil his philosophy into the team as it would be suicidal for him to enter match day 10 in the bottom half.

Remember the days at Kitende?

DO THEY NEED TO RETAIN THE PLAYING STAFF?

Absolutely yes,

Much as they would like to exhibit their financial muscle in the player market, they need to put in mind that football is about building and maintaining momentum and using it to your advantage.

They need to keep faith in the players that won them promotion in spite of the fact that there is need to for some reinforcements in some key areas. They need to buy the right players and in the right positions.

Nyamityobora almost signed a fresh squad prior to the 2018/19 season.

We all know where they are now.

DO THEY NEED TO SIGN A TOP STRIKER?

Obviously yes, the old adage goes that "Good strikers win matches and good defenders win championships".

In this case, Wakiso Giants may not want to win the championship but win as more games as possible for they don't come easily in the top division.

Wakiso Giants should sign a top marksman like Juma Balinya or Nelson Senkatuka

Proline's top scorer Ivan Bogere scored 14 goals, a tally that dwarfs Ivan Kiweewa's tally of six, the leading scorer for Wakiso Giants.

Their other top marksmen only managed a combined total of six, Norman Ogik and Karim Ndugwa with 3 each ( They joined in January though)

If we are to transfer that to the topflight,
Police's Juma Balinya managed 19 but it only managed to keep them afloat, if you take away his goals, Police FC would be relegated.

Well, there is a notion that they have been winning games as unit but what will happen when they face teams like Bright Stars, Tooro United, BUL etc who do not provide spaces of operation? They need yo sign a top striker in the mould of Nelson Senkatuka.

Despite this analysis being based on Wakiso Giants as a case study, the other promoted teams should also follow the same script and avoid being caught offside like the promoted crop of 2017/18 who simply made a cameo visit to the league.