Orit; Fierce battle for slots will prod Venom fangs against Mazembe

The arrival of winger Abdul Lumala at Vipers has heightened competition for places. PHOTO/EDDIE CHICCO  

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It is a football rarity for the trio to appear in the same starting eleven in Oliveira's favoured 4-3-3 system. Last season, Orit spent much time on the surgeon's table but had earlier been locked in a fight for games with Kariisa for the pivotal role of scoring and creating goals for the Venoms.

The arrival of  pacy winger Abdul Lumala from Egyptian side Pyramid expanded Vipers coach Roberto Oliveira's options and undeniably piled pressure on hirthetho starters Milton Kariisa and Ibrahim Orit.
It is a football rarity for the trio to appear in the same starting eleven in Oliveira's favoured 4-3-3 system. Last season, Orit spent much time on the surgeon's table but had earlier been locked in a fight for games with Kariisa for the pivotal role of scoring and creating goals for the Venoms.


"We are all working hard to see that the team progresses to the next stage. It is a stiff competition for starting berths but any player given a chance will give his best," Orit told Daily Monitor ahead of Sunday's Caf Champions League tie against TP Mazembe of DR Congo.


The contest at the St Mary's Stadium-Kitende will have Vipers bidding to make the lucrative group stage for the first time at the expense of Frank Dumas' five-time winners TP Mazembe.


"The coach is motivating us and giving us that positive attitude. I guess he has watched them play and will use the three Congolese players in our team to his disadvantage. We are a good team and that shows we are going to win the game at all costs," the former Mbarara City forward revealed.


Vipers have been elated by the news that three TP Mazembe crucial stars; Kabaso Chongo, Christian Koffi Koume and Phillipe Kinzumbi were banned by Caf for four matches for attacking Senegalese referee Ndiaye Maguette during Mazembe’s 4-1 semi final defeat to RS Berkane (Morocco) during last season’s CAF Confederation Cup. 


More still, Zambian defender Tandi Mwape is also supesnded for the first leg contest at Kitende.


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"We have forgotten about the Soltilo Bright Stars draw (in the StarTimes Uganda Premier League) and we are focusing on the next game. The belief in camp is that we must win the home tie and all the players know that this is the platform we crave for to show our potential on the continent," Orit added.


Attacking forward Paul Mucureezi, back from an injury layoff knows a thing or two about  the vagaries of continental football following his illustrious spell at KCCA and he is ready to step in.


"I'm fully healed from the metatarsal injury and eager to get back to business. The coaches are aware that I tend to score in such big matches," Mucureezi said. 


Caf Champions LeagueSecond Preliminary Round Sunday, 4pmVipers vs TP MazembeSt Mary's Stadium-Kitende Return Leg, October 15TP Mazembe vs VipersKamalando, Lubumbashi


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