CAF Confederation Cup
Vipers vs Sfaxien
St Mary’s stadium
Vipers Sports Club make their return to continental football tomorrow afternoon with Tunisian club CS Sfaxien for the Confederation Cup playoff engagement whose winners after two legs qualify for the group stages.
The Venoms have to respond after a 2-0 defeat at the hands of Algeria’s CS Constantine in their last continental tie eliminated them from the champions league and hope is to see a performance similar in dominance to the previous home game against Onduparaka.
In CS Sfaxien, Vipers meets well oiled opponents thus few give the Venoms a hope of getting a positive result out of the game however coach Micheal Ouma remains optimistic ahead of the epic encounter.
Speaking after the last practice, the Kenyan born tactician explained that this game is like a final and expects only the best from his charges if they are to have a merit over their Tunisian opponents.
“We have prepared very well and expect to put up a very good performance and give our opponents a run for their money. We are playing at home and have to give our fans a good game so we shall not take this match lightly,” said Ouma.
Its a penultimate game which the Venoms must win with a good margin before they travel to Sfax, Tunisia next week for the return leg slated on 20th January 2018 in Sfax.
CS Sfaxien are eight time Tunisian league champions (1969, 1971, 1978, 1981, 1983, 1995, 2005, 2013) and one of Africa’s prominent sides for the past 20 years as three Caf Confederation Cup crowns in 2007, 2008 & 2013 plus a caf cup triumph in 1998 speak volumes about their quality.
Unlike Vipers who scaled down from the champions league, the Juventus arabs had to overcome Green Buffaloes to reach the play off round with Ruud Josef Krol’s men prevailing 4-2 on aggregate against the Zambians.
Though Sfaxien aren’t quite the force they were in 2013 when they last won this competition in impressive fashion, there is still an abundance of quality within their quality thus Vipers have to be at their best.
Tadeo Lwanga looks set to play a part having missed the defeat against Constantine and his presence gives the team deserved leadership on the pitch.
Bashir Ssekagya is still out recovering from a knee injury he picked during the 1-0 fall to CS Constantine last month.
Fabien Mutombora and Derrick Ochan are the keepers available for the CS Sfaxien engagement.
Fred Okot is out for sometime with a knee injury while Halid Lwaliwa will undergo a late fitness test.
Steven Mukwala, Joseph Janjali and Tom Masiko could make their continental debuts for Vipers if selected to play on Saturday.
Vipers – Last five results ( All competitions)
- Won 3-0 vs Onduparaka (league)
- Drew 0-0 vs Bright Stars (league)
- Drew 0-0 vs Tooro United (league)
- Lost 0-2 vs CS Constantine (CCL)
- Won 3-1 vs BUL (league)
CS Sfaxien – Last five results (All competitions)
- Lost 0-1 vs Green Buffaloes (CCC)
- Won 4-1 vs Green Buffaloes (ccc)
- Won 1-0 vs Kairouan (LI1)
- Drew 1-1 vs Etoile du Sahel (LI1)
- Drew 0-0 vs Hammam Lif (LI1)
The Tunisians currently lie third on their 14 team professional league behind Esperance in second and table topping CA Bizerte with 3 matches to wind up the first round.
Match Day Squad:
- Fabien Mutombora
- Ibrahim Kiyemba
- Davis Kasirye
- Yayo Lutimba
- Halid Lwaliwa
- Livingstone Mulondo
- Tadeo Lwanga
- Geofrey Wasswa
- Moses Waiswa
- Tito Okello
- Dan Sserukuma
- Derrick Ochan
- Bashir Asiku
- Steven Mukwala
- Brian Nkuubi
- Duncan Sseninde
- Tom Masiko
- Abraham Ndugwa
- Noah Wafula
- Joseph Janjali
- Rahmat Ssenfuka
- Innocent Wafula