Bidco Uganda Limited football Club kick-off their preliminary round of the CAF Confederation campaign Tomorrow afternoon against Egypt’s Future Fc at the St Mary’s Stadium in Kitende.
This will be BUL’s debut season taking part in the competition for which they reached after beating Vipers SC 3-1 in the final to win the Uganda cup that comes with a privilege to feature in the CAF Confederations Cup.
The Jinja outfit kicks off its exploits as host and hopes to take three points off Egypt’s FA champions, Future Fc, and stir their beginnings to pose as challengers for the second most coveted trophy in African club football.
Formerly Coca-Cola, Future Fc currently sit fifth in the Egyptian topflight league despite being newbies, and they won the EFA league cup earlier this year. The team jetted in on Monday and is residing at Sheraton Hotel in Kampala.
BUL Fc Head Coach Alex Isabirye anticipates playing even stronger teams on the continent but thinks it’s unfortunate that his charges are heading for such competitions while still in pre-season.
”After winning the Uganda cup, We knew we would play some of the strongest teams on the continent. Future FC is a strong team and It’s quite unfortunate we are still in preseason, and their league is running. Their activeness gives them an edge given that it’s a long while now since BUL last played any competitive game.” Manager Alex Isabirye told the team’s media after the draw.
“There is no weak team in the confederations cup, and football is football. We are preparing a strong team that will get good results, and trying as much as possible to put ourselves in the best conditions to win the tie,” he added.
Both teams will be making their debut on the continent, and for the second leg, BUL Fc will trek the journey to Cairo, -Egypt’s capital-, between September 16th to 18th.
The Eastern Giants finished fourth in the 2021/22 Uganda Premier League season, a win behind second-placed URA Fc after winning 14 and drawing 10 of their 30 games to make 52 points. If that is anything to go by, fans will hope to see their club upset big names once again.
BUL comes into this game with eight new signings in the team, the latest being young forward Edrine Mawerere on a three-year deal, and the others being Denis Mwemezi from Vipers SC on a two-year deal, experienced striker Frank Kalanda, defender Ronald Otti Ocitti from Mbarara City, Emmanuel Obua, goalkeeper Tom Ikara from relegated side Police Fc, forward Anthony Mayanja and defender Benon Tahomera.
The team has not reported any injuries yet so the tactician in Alex Isabirye could have almost a full squad to choose from and will be flanked by Richard Kasule, on the technical bench as Assistant Coach.
In their most recent friendly, BUL lost 1-0 against Rwandan side Kiyovu Sports Club with Erisa Sekisambu scoring for the hosts at 84″. However, despite the result in Kigali, a win tomorrow will be a big confidence boost going into the second leg against Future in Cairo.
“We are ready for the game on Saturday, everyone is set, we don’t have injuries, and the spirit is high in the camp. Starting at home is an advantage for us so we need to capitalize on that and get the best result out of it.” Richard Kasule said yesterday.
Saidi Keni -Captain BUL Fc- said the team has prepared well, players are in good shape, and the artificial turf in Kitende won’t give them a hard time this not being their first time at the stadium.
Alex Isabirye is likely to change his team around from the one that played at the friendly, but he will want some key players to remain starters to ensure BUL can pass their opening test with maximum points.
BUL Fc Squad
Saidi Keni, Tom Ikara, Emma Kalyowa, Richard Ayiko, Emma Obua, Douglas Muganga, Ben Tahomera, Aggrey Madoi, Pascal Ngobi, Allan Kigundu, Ibra Mugulusi, Simon Peter Oketch, Reagan Kalyowa, Hillary Onek, Ibra Nsimbe, Anthony Mayanja, Jerome Kirya, Karim Ndugwa, Frank Kalanda, Martin Aprem, Ibra Kazindula, Richard Wandyaka, Denis Mwemezi, and Edrine Mawerere.