By Brian Bariyo Tumuramye
Under the tutelage of Coach Christian Magooba, who has since been confirmed on a permanent basis after taking over from the late Peter Ssebulime towards the end of last season, UCU Lady Cardinals will be hoping to chase for this year’s title.
UCU Lady Cardinals will hope to start their title defense on a high as the new season gets underway on Saturday.
The Mukono based side will be at home battling with She Corporate in one of the two games that will be played on the opening day, Saturday, 2nd November 2019 in Mukono.
Both UCU Lady Cardinals and She Corporate are favorites for this season’s championship given the good squads they have.
The league has gone through changes including change of name from the FUFA Women Elite to FUFA Women Super League, reduction in the number of teams taking part from 16 to 8 and played in a block format.
Coach Magooba is aware of the pressure that comes with being the reigning champion but he is confident the team he has will do a good job starting with Saturday’s game.
“It is always tough to be a champion because all the attention will be on you but I’m confident of the team I have. We go into tomorrow’s game well prepared because we have had a good pre-season. I can’t tell the outcome but I know the girls are in good shape and ready for the game.” He told said.
UCU Lady Cardinals have maintained the core of the team they had last season and players like Hasifa Nassuna, Moreen Kinavudori and Ruth Aturo will be very vital in their quest to retain the league title.
The arrival of towering defender Shadia Nankya brings stability to their back line given her command, game reading and ability to tame strikers.
She Corporate on the other hand have been the busiest side in the transfer market bringing in about ten players.
Bridget Nabisaalu, Phiona Nabbumba, Janat Tungu, Winnie Nabbale and Miriam Ibunyu are some of the new faces at She Corporate.
Coach Ali Zzinda indicates his charges are in perfect shape and raring to go against UCU Lady Cardinals. For a team that flattered to deceive last season, a perfect start will be the target for the tactician.
“We are in good shape and the players are in the right state of mind to go and fight for the result against the defending champions. We have prepared well and I’m optimistic for a positive result.”
Crested Cranes interference
Both coaches share similar sentiments about what they term as interface given the fact that the national team is currently training while at the same time, the league gets underway.
Zzinda and Magooba have complained about players being fatigued in trying to balance playing for their respective clubs but as well giving full commitment in training at the national team.
The hosts will be without left back Phoebe Banura who is ruled out with an injury. Defender Annet Kemisha is also a doubt after sustaining a knock in training.
She Corporate on the other hand have no injury threats but will have to make a late fitness test for captain Vanessa Karungi and Favour Nambatya.
Probable Starting Teams
UCU Lady Cardinals
Ruth Aturo, Mercy Nabuloobi, Annet Kemigisa, Shadia Nankya, Teddy Najjuma, Esther Kwagala, Jauharah Nabaggala, Moreen Kinavudori, Hasifa Nassuna, Jackie Nakasi
Vanessa Karungi, Miriam Ibunyu, Wilmer Nantumbwe, Winnie Nabbale, Bridget Nabisaalu, Cissy Nantongo, Jackie Ogwal, Phiona Nabbumba, Favour Nambatya, Dorcus Namukisa, Sarah Namulindwa