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UPL: Spirited Express FC holds defending champions Vipers SC at Wankulukuku

Uganda Premier League 
Express FC 1-1 Vipers SC
Betway Mutessa II Stadium, Wankulukuku 
Tuesday, 09-02-2021

Express FC and Vipers SC played to a 1-1 draw in their Uganda Premier League game played at the Betway Mutessa II Stadium in Wankulukuku on Tuesday, February 09.

After a goalless draw in the opening half, both sides netted from deflected free kicks.

Following a foul on substitute George Ssenkaba, Godfrey Lwesibawa saw a free kick brash off Disan Galiwango and into the back of the net for the opening goal on 57 minutes.

A minute later, Vipers responded in similar fashion with Karim Watambala’s goal-bound effort deflected past Mathais Muwanga in the Express goal.

The result ensures both sides remain unbeaten in the UPL this season with the Red Eagles now 6th with 9 points from five games while Vipers climb into 2nd on 11 points.

Action between Express FC and Vipers SC on Tuesday. (PHOTO/Sanyuka)

Red Eagles maintain decent start

Express FC have been one of the standout performer in the early season exchanges as they are yet to lose a game.

Coming into Tuesday’s contest, they had won both of their opening two home games and were optimistic despite facing arguably their biggest test to date.

Wasswa Bbosa’s side whose last game was a victory over SC Villa, looked the better side especially in the opening half and were unfortunate not to strike before halftime.

Frank Kalanda failed to connect with a Godfrey Lwesibawa’s long throw-in with Fabian Mutombora stranded before the on-rushing Eric Kambale forced a brilliant low save from the Burundian custodian after connecting nearly with a cut-back.

Lwesibawa was causing all sorts of trouble for the Venoms down the right and could have scored at the half-hour mark but sliced his effort over-the-bar after he was expertly played in by Daniel Shabeena’s lobbed pass.

Express were in absolute control of the game and Musiige would later blast over from a good position while Enock Walusimbi who some how found himself in the Venoms area, failed to hit the target after lashing onto Kambale’s through-ball.

Vipers fail to replicate Saturday’s masterpiece

Vipers have been in fine form going into the clash at Wankulukuku.

They were favourites to win at a venue where they have not lost since 2015 and after demolishing MYDA FC 7-0 in their previous encounter, the Venoms faithful hoped for a good show.

However, they started slow and could not master a shot on target in the opening half save for Galiwango’s low cross that was fumbled out for a corner by Muwanga.

In the second half, they improved especially after the introduction of Allan Kayiwa just after conceding.

After Shabeena fouled Yunus Ssentamu just outside the area, Watambala popped up with the goods. The midfielder sent a curling effort goal-wards and it was helped on its way by Kambale’s head, off which it brushed and flew into the back of the net.

With both sides more content with a point each as the game went on, Galiwango’s low cross evaded both Ceaser Manzoki and Kayiwa and crept out for just a goal kick.

Action between Express and Vipers at Wankulukuku.

The last chance for the Venoms to take all three points fell to Manzoki but the striker headed Galiwango’s cross just wide of the target.

In their next fixtures, Express will be away to URA FC on Sunday while Vipers hosts UPDF FC the day before.

How both teams started

Express FC

Mathais Muwanga (GK), Enock Walusimbi (C), Sadiq Ssekyembe, Murushid Juuko, Isa Lumu, Daniel Shabeena, Mahad Yaya, Charles Musiige, Godfrey Lwesibawa, Eric Kambale, Frank Kalanda.

Vipers SC 

Fabian Mutombora (GK), Paul Willa, Disan Galiwango, Halid Lwaliwa (C), Livingstone Mulondo, Siraje Ssentamu, Karim Watambala, Paul Mucurezi, Ibrahim Orit, Ceaser Manzoki, Yunus Ssentamu.

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