STARTIMES UGANDA PREMIER LEAGUE
By Joseh Kizza
Mbarara City FC's explosive season continued with a ninth straight game without defeat as they easily beat Nyamityobora FC 3-0 in the Mbarara derby on Friday to keep within touching distance of Vipers SC and KCCA FC at the top of the table.
For a team that finished in the bottom half of the log last season (11th), a 3rd-place ranking after 18 games in this campaign is as impressive as it can get for the Ankole Lions.
They are now two points behind second-place Vipers - the defending champions - and five points adrift of leaders KCCA, who are last season's runners-up. The latter sides play today: Vipers at home against SC Villa and KCCA away to Bright Stars FC.
For now, Mbarara City will relish a result that did well to underline their credentials as genuine title contenders. And the ruthless manner in which they squeezed the life out of a struggling Nyamityobora side would have provided more conviction to those that do not perceive them as real challengers of the big boys.
By the second minute of the game at Kakyeka Stadium, the hosts were already in front, courtesy of a Makweth Wol strike, with Paul Mucureezi providing the assist.
Towards the half-hour mark, Mucureezi turned from provider to scorer as he struck to make it two for Mbarara City and give the hosts a cushion going into the break.
Jude Semugabi, who set up Mucureezi for the second goal, also saw the back of the net to put the game well beyond the Abanyakare with a precise finish in the 70th minute.
His final application to the scoreline wrapped up a comprehensive victory for Livingstone Mbabazi's side.
It also registered as sweet revenge for Mbarara City, considering that of the three games they have lost this season, one of them was a 2-1 defeat to Nyamityobora back in October.
Mbarara City have won all their home games in which Mucureezi has scored or made an assist.
It is a constrasting picture for James Odoch's side - they have won only three games and have suffered defeat 12 times, with Friday's heavy loss anchoring them in the dreaded drop zone, in 14th place.
A win for 15th-placed Ndejje University FC today against Police FC will see them leapfrog Nyamityobora.
More league action
On Saturday, holders Vipers will host SC Villa while table toppers KCCA will be away at Bright Stars.
While Onduparaka FC host Kirinya-Jinja SSS, Police FC will be in action against Ndejje University. Tooro United will be at home against Paidha Black Angels.
On Sunday, Express FC will be on the road to face BUL FC.
All the games will kick off at 4pm local time.