There have certainly been better KCCA performances than yesterday’s lackluster 1-0 win over Madagascar’s CNaPS at the StarTimes Stadium.
Yet ultimately that will hardly matter for now as the Ugandan champions sealed progression to the first round of the Caf Champions League on away goals rule following a 2-2 draw over two legs.
Paul Mucureezi got the decisive strike – a ferocious header from a Mustapha Kizza corner on 63 minutes – that calmed the nerves on the KCCA bench and sent the stadium into a pandemonium.
The Islanders put up a brave fight especially in the first half with Lalaina Jacquot trickery troubling the KCCA defence yet in the second, Mike Mutebi’s side had to thank custodian Charles Lukwago for two reflex saves late in the game.
Set plays key
“KCCA beat us because they are so good in set pieces. They were not the better team over two legs,” CNaPS head coach Patrick Randriambololona Tipeh said.
“We played a team that used the ball well before going on a defensive. They have been together for six years but we are still a younger project and you could see that,” Mutebi revealed.
Up next on KCCA’s menu are Ethiopian giants St George who broke no sweat after South Sudanese side Wau Salaam opted out of their CAF Champions League preliminary round tie. Mutebi expressed no fear for next month’s task; “They are more experienced than us, they love to play and will make our players think.
“We have to show them that we now belong to the big stage with the big boys. Everyone that now comes to play KCCA does his research and will know we are not walkovers.”
The winner over two legs will head straight to the lucrative group stage yet the loser stands a chance of joining the Caf Confederations Cup.
Preliminary round result
KCCA 1-0 (2-2) CNaPS
(KCCA advance on away goals rule)
March 5-7 at Addis Ababa Stadium
St George vs KCCA