By: Danito Nsubuga
SC Villa will host perennial nemesis Express FC in one of the biggest rivalries of Ugandan football despite Villa’s switch of home ground from Kampala to Masaka.
This will however go down in history as one of the derbies to have had the worst build ups due to the gulf in the form for the two rivals.
SC Villa are currently enjoying one of their best runs having only lost once in 11 games. Express on the other hand find themselves in the red zone of the table with 11 points and they have already changed coaches on 3 occasions.
Last season Express put up a strong challenge on SC Villa, the first leg at Namboole was edged by Villa 3-2 and the second one edged by Express FC 1-0 with Allan Kyambadde’s thunder bolt being the difference.
It’s quite interesting that among the players who started that winner at Wankulukuku, only goal keeper Emmanuel Opio is still at the club and four of his former teammates are at SC Villa. Allan Kyambadde, Mukasa Musa and Simon Serunkuuma have all since switched allegiance to the blue side.
SC VILLA. W W W D W
Express FC. L W L D L
The last 7 meetings between them have yielded 19 goals with SC Villa edging marginally on 3 wins, Express 2 and 2 of them have ended in stalemates.
Many bookmakers have not given Express a chance to win against Villa at Masaka a ground at which they have not lost a single game but assistant coach Paul Mukatabala is skeptical about the euphoria warning that, derby matches are neither decided on form guide on home or home advantage. He says,
” Being a former player at SC Villa, I have played in many of these derbies but the form in which every team is found does not matter at all”
“Every player gets psyched up by the occasion and you never easily predict what will happen. Express have just signed a new coach and I believe his new players will be wanting to prove a point to him” He added,
But he asserts that his team are ready to face any Express team that turns up on the day.
” We are prepared for the game tomorrow and all the boys are set, we have no fresh injury concerns. Only Adriko John will miss as he is still nursing the injury sustained against Bright stars. ”
Simon Serunkuuma has only trained for 2 days and that means he will not be in contention for a place even on the bench.
Express FC will look to continue riding on the back of diminutive striker Dan Serunkuuma who has scored almost 71% of their goals this season, he has managed 5 with Mubarak Nsubuga and David Ndihabwe scoring the other 2.