They joy of a strong finish in the StarTimes Uganda Premier League looks set to haunt Busoga United. After their best ever finish in fourth with 42 points from 25 games, what holds for the Jinja-based side this campaign? Hope, perhaps.
And hope has everything to do with the club, not just in the name of their charismatic chairperson Dinah Hope Nyago.
Busoga United will hope that Nyago’s political activity does not cast too dark a shadow on its on-pitch activity. United will hope that they are literally united after a tumultuous off-season in which players whined about nonpayment more than starved puppies would.
United will hope that leaving The Mighty Arena that is ensconced inside Jinja SS for Kakindu Stadium will not affect its fortunes. United will hope that new CEO Andrew Ndyabahika has cast the ballast strong enough to anchor the club’s ship that has been shaken, with head coach’s position often in the mills as being on the line.
It’s indeed a plethora of hope at Busoga United where Abbey Bogere Kikomeko has kept his job and is lucky to still have some of his star players training with the club.
The attacking glimmers of Lawrence Tezikiya, Isma Mugulusi, Anthony Mayanja, Ivan Wani, Sharif Kimbowa, Paul Ssekulima and Musa Magumba are all still with the team despite many of the lot earlier growing increasingly frustrated with their managers.
The issue was that with Nyago taken up by electioneering, the running of the affairs of the club has been the least of her concerns. Instead, she brought in Ndyabahika to try and keep things united at Busoga.
The team can count their luck that in the StarTimes Uganda Premier League, most teams generally avoid pricing away contracted players, so the likes of South Sudan international Wani could not easily leave as few clubs have the financial muscle to buy off their contract.
United have added Laban Tibita to their set up and the former Maroons and Tooro United winger should be pivotal in adding to what Wani skipper George Kasonko bring to their attack.
However, the loss of midfield cog mills in Ibrahim Mugulusi to crosstown rivals Bul and David Bagoole to champions Vipers could leave a void too big for mere hope to fill.
After the record top four finish last season, doing better would be the ultimate goal, but for a club that is already relieved that delay to start the season has meant they will only have less than five games to be without Nyago, going a few rungs down the table will not be tragic.
BUSOGA UTD FIXTURES
UPDF vs. Busoga Utd
Tuesday, December 8
Busoga Utd vs. Bul
Saturday December 12
Busoga Utd vs. Kyetume
Tuesday December 15
Police vs. Busoga Utd
Sunday December 20
Busoga Utd vs. Vipers
BUSOGA UNITED CV
Nickname: Mighty Team
Founded: 2012 (as Kirinya-JSS)
Ground: Kakindu Stadium
Chairwoman: Dinah Hope Nyago
Coach: Abbey Bogere Kikomeko
Captain: George Kasonko
Last Season: 3rd