Maroons seek longer UPL stay

New signing , forward Andrew Kigozi goes through his paces . PHOTO /MAROONS FC

What you need to know:

Maroons were relegated again at the end of the 2019-2020 season and thus spent the last two seasons in the second tier. 

Too good for the Big League but not good enough to last more than three seasons in the Startimes Uganda Premier League (UPL). 

That has been the story of Maroons since returning to the topflight league in 2007 following a two-decade absence. 

They suffered instant relegation in 2008 before bouncing back in 2010 under Asaph Mwebaze. 

Maroons then fell victim to the creation of two topflight leagues before being thrown out of the league by Fufa. 

Having returned to association football for the 2014-2015 season, the Prisons side earned promotion for the 2015-2016 season. 

Again their stay proved brief before returning to UPL for the 2017-2018 campaign. 

Maroons were relegated again at the end of the 2019-2020 season and thus spent the last two seasons in the second tier. 

The focus consequently is now to avoid an immediate return to the Big League. 

They appear to be heading in the right direction going by their transfer dealings. 

 The club has already made 13 additions to the squad and coach Mohammed Senfuma is confident his side will survive the drop. 

“We don’t just want to stay in the league the aim is to finish in a comfortable mid-table position.

We are targeting to win at least eight first round games which would save us the pressure that comes with the second round,” Senfuma revealed. 

But questions will be asked about his ability to lead a topflight league team having only previously worked as one of two assistants to Asaph Mwebaze including Yusuf Kyambadde. 

“We have full confidence in Senfuma because he understands the way Maroons operates and he has been here for a very long time,” club CEO Pius Bamwange told Daily Monitor. 

Senfuma is banking on the experience of players such as midfielder Brian Nkuubi who joins from URA having previously won a UPL title with Vipers. 

Forward Samson Kigozi will hope to rediscover his touch after making the switch from KCCA while the club also picked a number of players some on loan, from Vipers. 

These include highly rated striker Lawrence Tezikya, Umar Kyebatala and Jacob Okao and the versatile Mpanga Sula. 

The returning Ronald Orombi and David Ndihabwe should also make up for the long-term absence of Emmanuel Olinga. 

The club also retains a number of players that went down with the team to the Big League including goalkeepers Akol Emmanuel and Amir Nalugoda. 

The enterprising pair of Solomon Walusimbi and Abraham Tusubira should return as better forward in the topflight division. 

The pair will add to stiff competition for the forward places that intensified Fred Amaku finally opted to stay at the club. 

 The former Paidha Black Angels striker finished as last season’s top scorer in the Big League 15 goals. 


Maroons FC squad 2022-2023.

Tamale Simon, Akol Emmanuel, Amir Nalugoda, Sula Mpanga, Ceasar Olega Ceasor, Innocent  Biyika, Godwin Kitagenda Fredrick Kigozi Nickolas, Jacob Okao, Patrick Bayiga, Belmos Opio, Edward Kabona, David Ndihabwe, Norman Odipio Borniface

Isaac Mpagi, Brian Nkuubi, Felix Okot, Ronald Orombi, Darious Ojok,  Hillary Adima, Godwin Nzali Birungi, Arafat Kakonge, Hadadi Kambugu, Andrew Samson Kigozi, Solomon Walusimbi, Abraham Tusubira,  Noel Nassasira, Umar Kyebatala, Lawrence Tezikya, Fred Amaku


Honours


    Ugandan Super League

        Champion (2): 1968, 1969


    FUFA Big League

        Champion (3): 2010, 2015, 2017


Performance in CAF competitions

    African Cup of Champions Clubs: 1 appearance

     1970 – Quarter-finals




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