Paul Mucuurezi’s body language after Mbarara City’s cagey affair with Express in the StarTimes Uganda Premier League tie on Tuesday depicted that of a man who felt the team could have achieved much more.
This was a rather fantastic opportunity for Mbarara City to close in on defending champions, SC Vipers who lost 2-1 to Ndejje Lions, but all that was thrown down the gutter because of their unconvincing display.
“We came as a team, we knew it wasn’t an easy game because Express had lost a game previously so we knew they had to come definitely looking for a win,” Mucureezi told www.football-256.com. “A draw is not a bad result to us because it’s better than a loss.”
Credit of course should go the Express gaffer, George Ssemwogerere for the conservative approach he deployed.
Express were clearly set up to thwart whatever Mbarara City had to throw at them and pounce back while exploiting the mercurial skills of Frank ‘Zaga’ Tumwesigye and exploitive runs of Micheal Birungi.
This laid-back approach invited more pressure on them from the visitors but a ruthless Express defence marshalled by John Revita and Charles Musoke were not taking any of that.
Those two resolutely stood their ground in turn keeping Mucuurezi, Jude Ssemugabi and company at bay.
But in retrospect, Mbarara City should have done much better, considering their track record this season where they remain unbeaten against the traditional sides.
But more importantly, for a game Mbarara City comfortably bossed, they must feel hard done by the goalless and single point they walk away with back to Kakyeeka.
But on further scrutiny, Mbarara City may have accorded Express FC way too much respect than they should have as evidenced in Mucureezi’s sentiments.
“Yeah definitely we came in as a bigger side now because we are in a better position than them.”
“So we knew as Mbarara City we are looking forward to the teams that are above us, that’s KCCA and Vipers but then it didn’t go as planned but then I insist a draw is not a bad result compared to a loss.”
Those rather sound like the words of a man contented with the results earned but for a team with some lofty ambitions, you feel this is the time they should be punching way above their waist.
And why not? They’ve credibly earned the plaudits thus far this season.