Tuesday, December 14
*Arua Hill 2-2 SC Villa
SC Villa failed to hold on to their early lead to draw with Arua Hill in a thrilling encounter at Barifa Stadium in Arua in a rescheduled League game.
Isaac ogwang and Nicholas Kabonge handed the Jogoos a 2-goal cushion few minutes to halftime but the Visitors succumbed to a flurry of attacks before settling for a point.
Alfred Leku brought one back before halftime to give Arua Hill a fighting stance.
SC Villa lived dangerously from restart and Arua Hill’s effort was rewarded when substitute Innocent Media leveled matters with 10 minutes to play.
The Jogoos go their opener against almost a run of play – Goalkeeper Rogers Omeddwa fumbled with a tame deflected effort to allow Ogwang score from close range in the 34th minute.
Kabonge doubled Villa’s lead five minutes later after a whipping cross from Saddam Masereka whose had rounded off Robert Matovu on the right flank.
And Arua Hill quickly halved the deficit when Eseru headed back into play for Leku to improvise with a half volley home.
Villa looked like they were to hang on, despite Arua Hill throwing more bodies up front, only for a good Geriga Atendele freekick in the area pounced on by Innocent Media to spark wild celebrations at Barifa.
Thriller at Barifa
SC Villa will feel it’s two points lost but they were never in control after going two up.
They move to nine points, three above the red zone and with a game in hand.
The result leaves Petros Koukouras’ future at the club hanging in balance but there were some promising signs especially going forward.
Goalkeeper Kibirige was a suspect from the opening proceedings but made some outstanding saves to keep his side in the game.
He pulled out a reflex save to fingertip Gaddafi Wahab’s freekick before the half-hour mark and later denied Leku’s header in the second half.
Arua Hill coach Livingston Mbabazi was furious and animated on the touchline and will rue a couple of missed chances when Villa sat back in the second half.
The Kongolo arrived at Barifa with swag; in their new team bus.
But all that was swept aside when they went two goals down.
But when Leku brought one back, the fans and players alike knew that it was not done yet.
But they failed to capitalise from a couple of Villa’s defensive and goalkeeping nervous shows.
Ssekamatte failed to poke home past an on rushing Kibirige when put through on goal.
And when Eseru had his goal disallowed for a Handball in the build up, Villa looked like they were clinging on for a gritty win.
But substitute Media (yes, you are reading the name right) showed poaching instincts to draw his side level in the 80th minute.
Despite more attacks in the closing stages, Villa stood on their feet to deny Arua Hill a stunning comeback as both sides shared spoils.
Unbeaten in their past four games, Arua Hill remain seventh with 15 points after 10 games.
What Next – Arua Hill welcome UPDF FC on December 18th at Barifa while SC Villa host KCCA FC on the same day in Njeru.
Arua Hill – Rogers Omedwa, Atendele Geriga, Richard Matovu, Toha Rashid, Joseph Vuni, Ibrahim Faizul, Gadaffi Wahab, Junior Andama, Robert Eseru, Samuel Sekamate, Alfred Leku
Substitutes – Eric Kibowa, Sharif Ssaka, Allan Mugalu, Innocent Media, Rashid Muhammad, Ibrahim Magandazi
Coach – Livingston Mbabazi
SC Villa – Meddie Kibirige, Gavin Kizito, Joseph Kafumbe, Fred Gift, Kenneth Semakula, Fred Agandu, Salim Abdullah, Travis Mutyaba, Saddam Masereka, Nicholas Kabonge, Isaac Ogwang
Substitutes – Martin Senkooto, Iddi Abdulwahdi, Benson Muhindo, Oscar Mawa, Umar Lutalo, Goffin Oyirwoth, Derrick Sekiranda
*Coach – Petros Koukouras
Center referee: Kaddu Ali
1st Assistant Referee: Mbabali Samuel
2nd Assistant Referee: Kagiri Tonny
Fourth official: Atiku Rahman
Match Assessor: Amin Bbosa