By Denis Turyahebwa
The long-awaited 2021 FUFA Big League kicked off on Thursday, 25th March 2021 with 8 games in different regions of the country.
FUFA had halted the competition due to the coronavirus pandemic and the dates the league was announced, it was still postponed to enable the organizers to prepare amidst the virus.
Both groups Elgon and Rwenzori will have eight games on day one with each having four players on Thursday.
Gaddafi FC will be up against Mbale Heroes FC at the Kyabazinga Stadium in Bugembe, Jinja in the Elgon group.
Former Wydad Casablanca Striker Joel Madondo and Patrick Gonahasa are the two prolific strikers that Gaddafi FC are relying on to see the way to the top flight next season.
Midfielder Mark Bamukyaaye, Ibrahim Massa, left-back Thomas Ochungo and goalkeeper Paul Mujwapani are also among the team for the army-funded side.
Mbale Heroes are counting on former BUL midfielder Jamaldine Buchochera, utility player Stephen Makumba (goalkeeper and forward), the immensely gifted Rashid Kudra Matovu, among others.
Elsewhere, the other three Elgon group matches will witness Arua Hills host Black Powers at the Barifa Stadium in Arua.
In Kampala, former top-flight sides Maroons and Paidha Black Angels will lock horns at the Prisons stadium, Luzira.
Maroons is coached by Charles Ayiekho Lukula and has retained most of the players who featured in the UPL last season as Pius “TZ Iniesta” Obuya, Ronald Orombi, Solomon Walusimbi and others.
Calvary from Yumbe will host Mbale’s Kataka at the Green Light Stadium in Arua.
Rwenzori Group: Edward Golola officially starts his reign at Tooro United with a home game against Water at the Buhinga Stadium in Fort Portal.
Golola is expected to name a formidable side that will fight for maximum points at home with players as Eric Akol, Marvin Kase, Patrick Kasule, Adrian Sserugo, Ponsiano Ssegonja and others all expected to feature. Elsewhere, a star-studded Proline will entertain Mark Twinamatisko’s Kigezi Home Boyz at the MTN Omondi Stadium, Lugogo.
Kigezi Home Boyz also consists of vastly experienced players like the towering Pascal Irasa, Philemon Lutaaya, Bright Haguma, Samarie Farouq as well as the Robert duo of Baluku and Katongole, among others,
Two newly promoted clubs Luweero United and Terrazo & Tiles will square up in Luweero.
At the same time, two former Uganda Premier League sides Ndejje University and Nyamityobora shall face off at the Arena of Visions playground in Ndejje.
By the end of the regular season, two teams will be promoted directly to the 2021-22 Uganda Premier League.
Besides the efforts of the individual clubs, the FUFA Big League is bankrolled by StarTimes, just like the main top division.
Here Are Some Of The Games
Gaddafi Vs Mbale Heroes – Kyabazinga Stadium, Jinja
Arua Hill Vs Black Power – Barifa ground
Maroons Vs Paidha Black Angels – Prisons Stadium, Luzira
Calvary Vs Kataka – Green Light Stadium, Arua
Ndejje University Vs Nyamityobora – Arena of Visions
Luweero United Vs Terrazo and Tiles – Luweero
Proline Vs Kigezi Home Boyz – MTN Omondi Stadium, Lugogo
Tooro United Vs Water – Buhinga Stadium, Fort Portal