July 5, 2022

Express complete signing of Bright Stars winger Akandwanaho

By Shafic Kiyaga
Joseph Akandwanaho (L) has joined Express on a two-year contract | Courtesy photo

Bright Stars pacey winger Joseph Akandwanaho has completed his transfer to Uganda Premier League champions Express FC, the club has announced.

The winger has signed a two-year contract at the Betway Muteesa II Stadium, with an option for a further year in a deal that could be worth UGX 45 million.

Akandwanaho was one of the best players for Bright Stars last season, helping them finish fifth in the league – their best finish since gaining promotion to the top division in 2013, and also received his first senior national team call up as part of the provisional squad for the friendly against South Africa in June.

The left footed winger spent just one season at Bright Stars, playing in all 26 of the club’s matches last season, where he was involved in 14 goals, scoring eight goals and providing six assists.

“It is a dream come true,” Akandwanaho said in his first interview with the club, adding; “I have always wanted to play for a club this huge with a rich history.”

“I am grateful to everyone who made this happen but most importantly, I want to reiterate that I am here to help the club achieve its dream of winning more silverware.”

The deal was announced hours after the Red Eagles announced their first signing of the window, acquiring former Kyetume FC goalkeeper Joel Mutakubwa on a free transfer.

Express’ hierarchy have followed Akandwanaho’s progress over the last 10 months closely and have been specifically impressed by his speed, determination, work rate and ability to play in different roles in attack.

Wasswa Bbosa and his technical team believe the addition of Bbosa will ease the burden on the front three of Eric Kambale, Godfrey Lwesibawa and Martin Kizza who had to play through a pain barrier in games last season.

With Frank Kalanda striving for form, and the injury to George Ssenkaaba that ruled him out for the season, Express specifically looked low on options in attack last season.

Kalanda has since been moved on, while Ssenkaaba is yet to return to full fitness, there is need to have more attacker in the squad as the Red Eagles prepare for a season where they also face a CAF Champions League campaign.

Akandwanaho will join the team when they fly out to Dar-es-Salaam in Tanzania for the CECAFA Kagame Cup. Express FC are placed in group B alongside Yanga SC of Tanzania and Big Bullets, the guests from Malawi.

Express will be playing at the CECAFA for the first time since 2013, where they reached the quarter-finals of the tournament and were knocked out by APR FC 2-0.

The Red Eagles reached the final of the tournament in 1994 and 1995, eventually losing to Simba SC and Sudan’s El Merriekh respectively.

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