Morley Byekwaso has admitted that KCCA FC’s continued varying performance levels within games is worrying after the club had to hold on to earn a 2-0 victory over second-division club Maroons FC.
Goals from defenders Herbert Achai in the first half and Hassan Jurua’s penalty after 67 minutes put the Kasasiro Boys in command of the tie at the Prisons Grounds in Luzira on Sunday.
Byekwaso’s side was dominant for the opening 35 minutes, taking the lead inside 17 minutes through Achai’s brilliant header off Jurua’s cross.
Achai nearly had a second moments later, once again combining with Jurua but his header was saved by Maroons’ goalkeeper Eric Dhaira. Gift Ali and Steven Sserwadda also came close for KCCA.
Despite extending their lead in the second half with Jurua’s first senior goal for the club, the 10-time Uganda Cup winners were frustrating.
They nearly gave away their advantage with Lukwago pulling off a couple of saves denying Pius Obuya from the spot.
However, even with KCCA taking a two-goal advantage from the first leg, Byekwaso says that his team’s inconsistent performance level is a cause for concern.
“I think the boys showed some of the characters today,” Byekwaso said after the game before adding; “But I am still worried by the drop off in performance levels especially in the second half.”
“We are trying to get to a level, but the team is not quite adapting well to that and it is also a problem.”
“But I cannot fault them because lately we have struggled with injuries and have had to play a few individuals out of position,” he explained.
“Three of our top strikers are still out with injury. Brian Aheebwa, Sam Ssenyonjo and recently Charles Lwanga has also joined the list.”
“And it is hard for us with the replacements available. They are all inclined more to midfield. That means they cannot give you the urgency in attack.”
“Of course, I have seen improvements here and there. But I think we need to get 45% more from their potential to get to the level where we want to be,” he continued.
With KCCA 10 points behind league leaders URA with nine games to play, the Uganda Cup remains KCCA’s only hope for silverware this season.
They will look to reach the quarter-finals of the tournament for the first time since 2018 – the 2020 edition was cancelled – going all the way to lift the trophy after defeating Vipers in the final.
KCCA will host the second leg on Thursday, May 6, 2021, at the MTN Omondi Stadium in Lugogo.