By Thomas Odongo
KCCA FC is now the first football club in Uganda to ever qualify for the CAF Champions League group stages after beating Ethiopia's St George by 1-0 on Saturday, March 17th 2018 during the return leg match at the Star Times Stadium, Lugogo.
Former Onduparaka FC goal poacher, Muhammad Shaban was the hero of the day after slotting home from close range just two minutes (47') after the break to set his side's fan base ablaze.
Earlier on in the first half, Shaban would have easily drawn the first blood but his shot that was fed to him by Paul Mucureezi went to St George's custodian's gloves.
That was Shaban's best moment in the first half that was mainly dominated by midfield sensations mainly Allan Okello who failed to produce a moment of magic albeit being fouled often.
KCCA Coach Mike Mutebi was delighted with the result and told the press that, ‘’it was a very good performance and it is a turning point for the club.’’
The visiting side had little to be talked about in the first stanza but their best chance came in the 56th minute of the game when their forward, Tamena pulled off a thunderbolt strike but KCCA's custodian, Chalres Lukwago was equal to the task.
With Allan Okello failing to produce a moment of magic in this well attended game, he was withdrawn for Julius Poloto.
With two minutes to play, KCCA charges resorted to wasting time with Shaban taking long to get out of the pitch for Patrick Kaddu.
And with just a minute to play in the extra time, KCCA goalkeeper, Lukwago was booked for intentionally wasting time but that did not deny KCCA a 1-0 win at home ground.
The win also implies that KCCA are currently Shs2 billion shillings richer. The Shs2 billion prize (roughly $ 0.55) is a prize awarded to every team that reaches to the group stages level of this tournament.
The next stage of this league is even very lucrative for obvious reasons and if KCCA advance again, they are bound to swim in cash.
However, FUFA is also set to receive an equivalent of 5% received by KCCA from.
St George meanwhile book a place for themselves (and the other 16 teams) in the play-offs for the CAF Confederation Cup.
CAF Champions League, Return Leg
Saturday, March 17th 2018
KCCA FC (Uga) 1-0 St George (Eth)
KCCA 1-0 St George