When SC Villa dived into the market in preparation for the 2022/23 campaign, they went for ragtag, bobtail, and anybody at their disposal.
It’s only hours before Uganda’s top-flight draws off the curtains, and the record champions (16) have just confirmed their incomings, a compilation of rank-and-file.
The Jogoo outed arguably their worst-ever business, a 20-man list. It’s a huge group of boys, wannabes – an inexperienced bunch. It’s a clear show of how deep the famous sleeping giant has continued to sink and slumber.
A source close to the club revealed to Football256, how Villa preferred to conduct trials because they didn’t want to spend on transfer fees.
“Someone within the Villa board brought this trials thing at the club, because they don’t want to deal with agents and spend on sign-on fees,” the anonymous source told this website.
“But, football has evolved from that. Even schools contact agencies for players, but at Villa, they wanted the cheapest of products.”
Even the bunch that have been around the top tier in their newly acquired, have been peripheral figures in their previous teams.
This can only exclude the likes of Ivan Bogere and Ivan Sserubiri, who until recently, featured for Wakiso Giants FC and URA FC respectively.
“Villa now has a policy that no player is meant to earn beyond UGX. 800,000, it doesn’t matter who it is, and with that, you can’t have good players.”
It’s a tedious struggle to find just one player among the purchases that the Blue faithful can count on for front-line success.
And, one will rightly question the motive behind netting down 20 new members to contracts in a single window.
What’s a team with 20 new players like? When do they gel into a team and not just individuals standing in isolation? Who sanctioned the moves?
“Villa always changes squads out of the blue, before you know, Player X has been thrown out. With this, players are not assured of continuity in terms of development,” the source noted.
The departing pack, who also survived relegation by a whisker last season, is a much better group than the incomings.
The club has failed to nail down the likes of Gavin Kizito Mugweri to new contracts, another show of how hideous the situation is at arguably the most successful club in the country.
“The Club made it hard for Gavin to renew. They were offering UGX. 5 million as sign-on fee for a three-year contract,” the source further revealed.
“The club was stuck on a UGX. 800,000 salary and this wasn’t helping in a business and development sense. The Player was left with no choice but decline the dictated offer from Villa.”
And, oh, Villa will for the very first time in history, share a home (Muteesa II Stadium, Wankulukuku) with bitter rivals, Express FC.
While this is not a transfer piece, it’s one event that may sink deep into the ugly side of the club’s history.
Every objective Villa fan will struggle to find hope in the forthcoming season, never mind, they always somewhat find a thing or two to cheer amidst the dark days.
In their first match as hosts at Wankulukuku, which is also their opener of the campaign, Villa will meet Gaddafi Modern FC on Sunday.