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Richard Ssekyanzi: My UPL First Round Best XI

There have been stars that have already written their names in the stones already after the first round of the 2019/20 Startimes Uganda Premier League.

One of the difficult thing to do is picking the best XI of UPL from the many good performers as we have seen in the first round.

Nonetheless, here are my best – in a 4-3-3 formation.

Goalkeeper:

Saidi Keni (SC Villa) – In his first season at the 16 time league holders, Keni struggled to even have a clean sheet but the return of goalkeeping coach Mubarak seemed to have worked the magic and the custodian has had a wonderful performance that have also convinced selectors for a place on the national team for CECAFA Senior Challenge Cup.

Keni edge KCCA FC captain Charles Lukwago who has continued to show maturity in between the posts but has had some careless mistakes along the way.

*Defenders

Dennis Okot (BUL FC); The experienced right back has emphasized the phrase “Old broom sweeps better.”


Okot was considered surplus to requirements at Lugogo but has managed to find plot at BUL where he has been a great pillar.

Aziz Kayondo (Vipers) – The young left back made his debut last season in a league game against Tooro United in Buhinga where he was voted man of the match and has never looked back.

He has been integral for the leaders both at the back and going forward. The explosive defender has kept new signing Farouk Musisi out of the Vipers starting XI.

Left back Aziz Kayondo. Vipers

Samuel Kato (KCCA FC) – Another young player on the team. He has managed to fill the big boots. The former Buddo SS captain has linked with John Revita splendly at the heart of KCCA FC despite this being his first spell in the top flight.

Halid Lwaliwa (Vipers) – He is the best centre back in the country after the departure of Timothy Awany.

Very calm and composed he has been at the heart of defence for the Venoms.

*Midfield

Gift Ali (KCCA FC) – Gigi as known by many in the football circles has managed to recover his old self.
He has been able to provide a curtain for the defence. Very industrious and also creative going forward.
Godfrey Akol (BUL) and Vipers’ Siraje Ssentamu have been outstanding as well.

Yusuf Ssozi (Police FC) – One of the few sparks for Abdallah Mubiru’s team this season.
Ssozi has been Police’s fulcrum going forward amidst all the woes at the back.

Boban Zirintusa (Busoga United); He made a return to playing football on home soil and it has worked for the experienced midfielder.

He has scored vital goals for the Busoga united, though many from the spot.

Forwards:

Fahad Bayo (Vipers SC): Another returnee. Another success story. Bayo has been a house hold name in the first round. Nine goals for the Venoms have lifted the Kitende based side at the summit.

Fahad Bayo. Vipers

Steven Mukwala (Maroons): Leading goalscorer with 10 goals. That should speak volumes for a player who was loaned from Vipers to a lower club.

Steven Mukwala. Sanyuka TV photo

Hassan Ssenyonjo (Wakiso Giants): This young pacy forward has been the brain of the Purple Sharks. A creative force with still much to give.

Hassan Ssenyonjo (12) has managed to lift Wakiso Giants

Coach

Edward Kaziba (SCVilla): From relegation strugglers last season to a team fighting for a title. Kaziba was one of the favorites for the sack but he (and his technical staff) has managed to turn around things at Villa who at one point struggled to have a training ground.

*Honourable Mentions
Karim Watambala (Vipers), Walter Ochora( Bul FC), Ibrahim Oritti (Mbarara City), Disan Galiwango (Express FC), Viane Ssekajugo (Wakiso Giants)

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