Viola Namuddu, the unsung hero in Uganda women football

Having reached the spotlight as a senior one student at Kawempe Muslim under coach Ayub Khalifa in 2011, Viola Namuddu caught the attention of many female football lovers with her never say die mentally.

She has always given more than 100% while on the football pitch which made her earn a She Cranes call up, becoming a regular starter in the right-back position.

Many compare her to Cranes’ Nicholas Waddada and the European football lovers compare her to the marauding Brazilian right-back Dani Alves due to her untiring overlapping runs on the right flank.

At one end Namuddu is clearing the ball off the line and like a flash she is up delivering the final cross in a counter-attack.

She covers much bigger ground than most Ugandan female footballers do, and she is not afraid to put her foot in where it hurts to recover possession or stop a cross going through.

She always teamed up well with midfielder Tracy Jones Akiror, as the pair always combined with intricate one-two pass movements to open up space down the wing for the former to get into crossing positions.

With more than two league titles to her name at Kawempe Muslim including a Women Uganda Cup triumph, Namuddu left Kawempe Muslim in 2015 and joined She Mak, where she was shifted from right back to central midfield.

With her intelligent tactical understanding, Namuddu has become one of the more important players of the team, as she brings rhythm and she provides the right tempo and intensity to She Mak’s play. Her significance leading to a five-game unbeaten run.

A testament to that is that when she suffered an injury during the team’s 1-1 draw against Rines, She Mak lost its fluidity and hang on by just to keep their unbeaten record.

The FUFA Women Elite League resumes in February and in an exclusive interview with www.football256.com, Namuddu in her down to earth nature asserted that she is focused on putting in more work because she still has a lot to offer to Ugandan female football more so on the National team.

“I love playing football and I want to play for a long time, so I need to keep on working hard to stay on top of my game.”

When asked what the best game in her career so far is, she responded happily, “The final we won against UCU at Nakivubo Stadium where I assisted Sandra Nabweteme’s goal in a 2-1 win.”

“I also made two clearances off the line, I was involved in 70% of my team’s attack and surely that was a jaw-dropping performance.”

“Everyone came hugging me and saying, because of you, we won this final,” she recalls.

Namuddu is also quick to label the Harambee Starlets as the hardest opposition she has faced in her career because games against Kenya require to double the effort due to their physical nature.

“Games against Kenya are always not usual games because the Kenyans have the physique and technique too so it requires you to double your efforts in order to have a slight chance against them.”

“Even a draw against them at home at the StarTimes stadium felt good because I knew at least we are getting to that level,” Namuddu said.

The youngster who hails from Kibuli, and grew through the unforgiving rigours at Nakivubo Blue, Kadiba in Katwe is one who never almost receives as much credit for her importance to the team’s play, but she is not bothered at all, because to her, team performances matter the most.

Viola Namuddu, remember the name.

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