Red Eagles bay for Bul's blood

Express defender Ismael Kawawulo (R) fights for the ball with Bul midfielder Jeromy Kirya. PHOTO/JOHN BATANUDDE 

What you need to know:

The Jinja side had a rough start to the second round winning only one in eight league matches. 

Bul alongside Nec and Kitara are firmly in contention for a rare double for the Stanbic Uganda Cup and the StarTimes Uganda Premier League. 

The Jinja side had a rough start to the second round winning only one in eight league matches. 

However, the Abbey Kikomeko-coached side picked up from the international break to force a draw away to leaders Kitara before smashing Wakiso Giants 3-0 at Njeru to maintain a healthy distance with Kitara at the top.

They followed that with a 6-5 penalty lottery win over KCCA last week at Njeru to advance to the semifinal of the Cup.

To Bul, winning the double will be more than what they dreamt but they can be content if they settle for any of the two.

But the truth is that after ending their eternal wait for silverware with the cup glory in 2022, the league is all that matters now.

They welcome an unpredictable Express on Saturday at Njeru putting in mind that the Red Eagles will be seeking revenge for the cup exit at the same venue last month. 

Bul will also want to settle a score of their own after the chaotic first-round battle at Wankulukuku ended 1-1 with Benon Tahomera, Walter Ochora and assistant coach Simeone Masaba sent off and Kikomeko cautioned.

“We played them in a tight affair in the Uganda Cup and eliminated them so expect them to come full force [on Saturday],” James Magala, Bul’s assistant coach said.

“We’re competing on both fronts and our boys are mentally ready for the last bend as witnessed from our last three games,” Magala, who played for Express during its glory days and also coached their goalkeepers before crossing the River Nile, added.

Bul was second on the table with 43 points, one behind Kitara before their clash against Vipers yesterday in Masindi.

Express, with 32 points from nine games, are freelancing - neither engaged in the relegation battle nor the title –but their new coach Abubaker Mbowa must impress his bosses for job security.

“They eliminated us before I came but we don’t have a lot of pressure; we want the players to learn fast how we want them to play so that we can finish in a respectable position,” Mbowa said ahead of the game.

Express beat URA 1-0 last match day to end Mbowa’s run of three losses since joining on March 5.

StarTimes Uganda Premier League 

Saturday fixture – 4 pm

Bul vs. Express, Njeru

(Live on Fufa TV)

Bul vs. Express – last five head-to-head

March 3, 2024: Bul 4(1)-(1) 1 Express

Dec 5, 2023: Express 1-1 Bul

April 8, 2023: Bul 1-2 Express

Nov 8, 2022: Express 1-0 Bul

Oct 26, 2021: Bul 0-1 Express

Overall statistics

Total matches – 26

Bul wins – 10

Draws – 6

Express wins – 10

Goals scored – 46