It’s only half time for URA
Posted Tuesday, February 19 2013 at 02:00
The tax collectors will hope to put one over Coton Sport next month to progress to the first round of the Caf Champions League. That would be only their second time, the first being last year when they eliminated Lesotho Correctional Services
An away draw is always a welcome result in knockout competitions.
That’s why URA’s goalless stalemate away to Coton Sport in the Caf Champions League preliminary first leg on Sunday was met with some rare excitement from their followers. Or relief, which is understandably backed by the fact that the tax collectors suffered a crashing 3-0 defeat on their last visit to the same opposition and in the same tournament in 2007.That result, valuable because it was snatched from West Africa - hardly a good hunting ground for Uganda – therefore, draws some deserving applause for URA.
Which brings us to the next question, what kind of stalemate is safer? Fredrick Musisi Kiyingi, a sports journalist and former KCC winger, says: “A scoreless draw is not one to celebrate. Had it been a scoring draw, it would have been healthy for URA. But at 0-0, it is still delicately poised. Any scoring draw will put Coton Sport through and I have my reservations over whether URA can beat them here.”
URA coach Paul Nkata, in the job for less than a month and taking his first continental assignment as head coach, should, nonetheless, be congratulated for living to his script.
The former SC Villa midfielder was consistent ahead of the game. “A draw would do for us,” Nkata asserted. They got it.
While Coton Sport wasted a myriad of chances in a match broadcast live back home on Radio Sapientia, credit must be reserved for man of the match - URA goalkeeper Allan Owiny - who pulled off a string of saves to keep Uganda’s representatives in it.
Benson Ociti, albeit, devoid of much supply up-front, created occasional scares for the hosts while defenders Allan Munaaba, Derrick Walulya, Sam Mubiru and Farouk Osama, protected by midfielder Owen Kasule, soaked in the hosts’ pressure well. But Nkata, who knows it is just half time, will hope for more on March 2 if they are to make the first round.
“We had a plan and we got our point. We now need to win in Kampala.” The team return tonight.
Meanwhile, former KCC defender Joseph Ochaya scored in Asante Kotoko’s (Ghana) 7-0 mauling of Sony El Nguema (Equatorial Guinea) in the same competition. Another Ugandan Andy Ssekayombya also netted for Tusker as they thrashed hosts St. Michel of Seychelles 4-1.
CAF CHAMPIONS LEAGUE
preliminary round results
Zamalek (Egypt) 7-0 Gazelle (Chad)
AS Vita Club (Cod) 3-0 DYTO (Tog)
Jamhuri (Zanzibar) 0-3 St George (Eth)
CA Bizerte (Tunisia) 1-1 Al Ittihad (Libya)
Dynamos (Z’bwe) 3-0 LCS (Lesotho)
St Michel (S’helles) 1-4 Tusker (Kenya)
Zanaco (Z’bia) 3-2 Mbabane (S’zland)
Pirates (S.Africa) 5-0 Djabal (Com)
Maxaquene (M’que)0-1 Mochudi (B’wana)
APR FC (Rwanda) 1-2 Vital’O (Burundi)
Enugu (Nigeria) w/o Principe (S. Tome) Simba (Tanzania) 0-1 Libolo (Angola)
Béjaïa (Algeria) 3-0 Olympic (Niger)
A. Kotoko (Ghana) 7-0 Sony Ela Nguema (Equatorial Guinea)
Primeiro (Angola) 4-2 Adema (Mad’scar)
Rabat (Morocco) 1-0 Banjul (Gambia)
Douala (Cameroon) 2-1LISCR (Liberia)
Horoya (Guinea) 0-0 Pedro (I. Coast)
C. Sport (C’eroon) 0-0 URA FC (Uganda)
Moghreb (Morocco) 1-0 Casa (Senegal)
Kano Pillars (N’eria) 5-1 Bangui (CAR)
AC Leopard (Congo)2-0 Mounana (Gabon)
ASPAC (Bénin) 1-1 ASFA (B. Faso)