SC Villa new coach Petros Koukouras has set his targets ahead of the club’s first game of the 2021/22 Uganda Premier League season.
Koukouras, a client of Sepuya Inc. Agency and a former assistant coach of South Sudan, was recruited by Villa this season to help the club restore lost glory.
After licensing delays, the Jogoos will finally get their campaign underway with a home game against Police FC on Friday at Kavumba Recreation Centre.
Villa were earlier scrapped off the league fixture and have since missed the opening three match-days.
“The players’ attitude is very good and the morale is very high. We have been waiting for the first fixture for a few weeks now so everyone is very excited about the game on Friday,” Koukouras told The-SportsNation in an exclusive interview.
The Greek coach says that he wants his team to occupy top places but his major target is to improve the players available.
He explained: “As I said from the unveiling our target is to create a competitive team and finish as high as possible. Our major target is to improve those young talented players we have to be able to win titles in the years to come.”
“We work on a daily basis to create a hard working team that is going to fight for every single game and I believe we have done some progress in a short period of time.”
It promises to be a turbulent spell for the gaffer who will be dealing with a compact fixture, and not to mention administration struggles.
He has a generally a new and inexperineced squad at his disposal after the club added over 12 new players.
Besides the likes of Kenneth Semakula (BUL) and Isma Mugulusi (Busoga United), most exciting young players including Oscar Mawa (KCCA J.T), Travis Mutyaba (Vipers J.T), , Gift Fred (Boma Utd), Ali Bayo (Edgars), Charles Bbaale (KJT), Iddi Abdulwahid (Arua Hill J.T), Joseph Yiga (Tooro United), Umar Lutalo (Aspire Academy) and Marvin Kavuma (NEC F.C) are yet to test top flight experience.
Seven players, including captain Asuman Alishe, were shown exit door.
But with fresh legs, Villa will be seen by some pundits as a team that has had some more time to prepare than the rest.
“I don’t see it as an advantage,” Koukouras told The-SportsNation in an exclusive interview.
“We didn’t know when we are going to play so we were preparing for the matches without playing them. Our training cycle was not for preseason but for the league so we can’t say we had more time to prepare.
“Police now had already played three league matches plus one for the cup and we didn’t have a game for a few weeks now, not even a friendly match as the rest of the teams were competing for the league. So to me is more disadvantage rather than an advantage.”
His first opponent Police FC have lost their opening three games and its expected that coach Abdallah Mubiru will be handling each game like a final.
“I have watched a few league matches so far and we played Police in a friendly match. We know they are a very good team and is a big surprise that they have lost all the 3 first matches,” Koukouras adds.
“Definitely is not reflecting the quality of their (Police) team and we expect to have a very difficult match. For them is going to be a do or die match but for us on the other hand is going to be the first league match of the season and is very important to start with 3 points.”
Heading into the first game of the season, Koukouras says that he has a couple of injuries in his squad including those carried from last season.
SC Villa First Five League Games:
Oct 29: Police (H) – Kavumba
Nov 3: Wakiso Giants (H) – Kavumba
Nov 20: Express (A) – Wankulukuku
Nov 26: Onduparaka (H) – Njeru
Nov 30: Mbarara City (A) – Kakyeka