Uganda Premier League: Who will win the title?
The 2017/2018 Uganda Premier League will reach a conclusion Friday as table-toppers Vipers SC and second-placed KCCA FC aim to clinch the title.
Vipers lead the table on 62 points, but know that only a win will guarantee the league at home against UPDF FC. A draw could leave them level with KCCA FC, currently on 60 points, if the reigning champions win away at Police FC.
In this scenario, the Kampala heavyweights would take the title on goal difference, with KCCA FC currently on +33 compared to Vipers' +27.
"We cannot afford to falter at this stage in the last game which determines if we win the title," Vipers coach Miguel Da Costa told KweséESPN. "The team will give more than 100% against UPDF FC, who are also fighting to avoid relegation."
Vipers will enter the final fixture in good stead after thrashing Express FC 5-0 in their penultimate fixture, while KCCA were unimpressive in their late 2-1 victory over Bidco FC.
"We want to win the title in style in front of our fans," Vipers captain Nicholas Wadada told KweséESPN. "We also want to maintain our unbeaten run at home this year.
"UPDF are fighting to stay in the Premier League and this game means a lot to them," he added, "but we need this game more than they do."
However, KCCA FC assistant coach Morley Byekwaso insists that the defending champions still believe that they can retain their championship.
"We have always told ourselves we shall keep winning our games and see how our close rivals perform in their games," he told KweséESPN. "We shall make sure we go all out and battle to win against Police FC, but hope that our rivals Vipers can falter."
Byekwaso is expected to be in charge of KCCA's final fixture as head coach Mike Mutebi will be attending his father's burial the same afternoon.
"We are going for real war against Police FC because we have a chance to retain the league title," KCCA FC youngster Allan Okello told the media during a press conference on Thursday.
While Vipers and KCCA will be battling for the title, the battle at the bottom will also be hotly contested as Masavu FC, Express FC, Proline FC, UPDF FC and Soana FC are all still battling to avoid the drop.
Even bottom-placed Masavu FC, on just 26 points, could still mathematically save themselves if they defeat Express and results elsewhere go their way.
Nyamityobora FC, Ndejje University FC and Paidha Black Angels FC are the three promoted sides who will feature in the top tier next term.
Ugandan Premier League: Final day fixtures
Soana FC vs. Maroons
Masavu FC vs. Express FC
Mbarara City FC vs. Kirinya Jinja SSS FC
Proline FC vs. URA FC
Police FC vs. KCCA FC
SC Villa vs. Bidco FC
Onduparaka FC vs. Bright Stars FC
Vipers SC vs. UPDF FC