Simba vs URA (0-1)
Preview: This encounter was Simba’s last chance to grab a ticket for the semi finales of the mapinduzi cup. More so, they needed nothing else but a victory. In return URA FC had already made a giant step into the semis and this match was set to consolidate the walk-through.
In a match of strategy, URA FC played its cards better and eventually won the match 1-0. Goal scored
The two coaches differed in strategy, owing to the stakes involved. Paul Nkata of Uganda Revenue Authory FC (URA) needed a draw to go through, thus opting for an ultra-defensive game whereas Simba’s coach who was in desperate need of victory s opted for an ultra-offensive game.
As both teams lined up on the artificial pitch, pressure mounted on the Simba players as waved their fans present at the Amaan stadium. At kick off, the Simba boys as in their habit rushed upfront and mounted pressure in the half of URA FC. The latter had a single job for over the first 45 minutes; that of clearing the ball off their penalty box; a task they did throughout, keeping their goal post clear.
Simba’s first shot on goal could only come after 27 minutes into play through Captain John Bocco. At the 31st minute, Bocco once more rose with a header but goalkeeper Alionzi Nafian denied him the opener as he deployed himself to punch the ball off target.
At the 45+3 minutes, in one of its rare counter attacks, URA FC opened score as Mbowa Patrick in a slalom move beat two defenders and hammered a deadly shot for URA 1-0 Simba.
This goal came as a blow to Simba players who won’t recover as they lost their playing style in the second half, being less inspired and disorganised. Simba’s Playmaker Mwinyi Kazimoto and other offensive midfielders was replaced but the substitutes lacked the talent and pace to shake off a solid URA FC defence controlled by captain Munaaba Allan .
URA FC changed strategy during the last quarter of the game with a better organization and moved a step upwards. Simba, in a precipitated football style lost a number of balls to its opponents and the rare goal opportunities ended up in the hands of goalkeeper Nafian. A last chance by Bocco at match end (96th minute) went useless. URA FC earns the 3 points and moves into the semis while mighty Simba is eliminated and goes home with much regrets, booedby Young African fans who chanted “bye bye Simba“ at the blast of the final whistle .
Young African vs Singida United: Yanga seizes a draw at the ultimate seconds (1-1)
In a match where two equal forces challenged each other, the second half became decisive to decide on the outcome of the match. Young Africans (Yanga) were able to pull a draw at the 93rd minute through a header from substitue Said Juma. Singida United had earlier opened score by a header from Danny Lyanga at the 73rd minute, with an assist from Man of the match, Shafik Batambuze from a free kick position.
In the semifinals to be played on Wednesday 10th January 2018, at 4:30pm, Uganda Revenu Authority FC will face Young Africans while at 8:15pm, Azam FC will face Singida United in the second semi finals.
The winners of these various matches will play the final of the 2018 Mapinduzi cup scheduled for Saturday 13th January 2018 at 8:15pm at the Amaan Stadium in Zanzibar.