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    Panic As Masaza Tournament Hangs In Balance, Buganda Officials, Players, Coaches And Managers Set To Lose Millions….

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    This year’s Masaza Cup tournament hangs in balance over the coronavirus pandemic.

    The Masaza Cup is Buganda’s most prestigious tournament that takes place every year in the different counties in Buganda with the final held at Namboole stadium.

    According to Haji Sulaiman Ssejjengo, the chairman Masaza organizing committee, they still have hope that the tournament may take place without fans in the stadiums. Ssejjengo stressed that their hope now lies in the hands of the government.

    “If government permits us, we may be forced to play the tournament without fans in the stadiums,” Ssejjengo said.

    Because of the prominence of the tournament, it has recently attracted huge sponsorship deals from big companies. Among them is telecom giants Airtel who pumped UGX1.2 billion in the tournament and Centenary bank who injected UGx490million last year alone.

    However, this may not happen this year especially once these companies are not assured of the numbers (supporters).

    Abbey Musinguzi alias Abtex, who was the first person to organise the finals in Namboole stadium told Grapevine Sport that the Masaza lukiiko is likely to lose over 200 million in the final alone.

    “I don’t think this year’s tournament will take place. Coronavirus has affected every sector especially those that gather huge crowds. Buganda will lose millions especially those in administration and at different levels,” Abtex said.

    Benard Bainamani, the Kyaggwe county administrator told Grapevine Sport that indeed there is panic after so many questions raised by different teams on how they are going to survive without fans went unanswered.

    Bainamani disclosed that on average, each county team has a budget of around Shs.200 million for the four months of the tournament.

    “On average, a player of Kyaggwe needs a sign on fee of Shs.3million, so counties may not afford to pay that money once they realise that fans will be absent,” Bainamani said.

    Bainamani  also expressed his worry on where the money to pay players and pay for match day expenses is going to come from.

    He said that Kyaggwe, an average team that has not reached the class of Buddu, Gomba and Ssingo counties has a budget of Shs.70 million to recruit players, cater for their bonuses and the coaching staff  which cannot be recovered once there are no fans during home matches.

    The tournament normally starts in the second week of June every year and Bulemeezi were last year’s champions.

     

    By Juma Ali

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    M7 Awards Onyango Brand New Pajero…

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    Janet Museveni (in yellow suit) displays Dennis Onyango's framed historical shirt #18 as President Yoweri Museveni (in white shirt) and other guests look on. Infront is Onyango's Pajero car reward

    His Excellency, the President of the Republic of Uganda General Yoweri Kaguta Museveni  and Minister of Education & Sports Janet Museveni rewarded former Uganda Cranes Captain Denis Masinde Onyango at Statehouse Entebbe with a Sports Pajero car for his glorious career with the National team and Club football.

    The Mamelodi Sundowns star flew into the country from SA at the invitation of FUFA who organised his travel for the event organised by Statehouse.

    The event was attended by FUFA President Hon. Eng. Moses Magogo, FUFA 1st VP Justus Mugisha, 3rd Vice President Hon. Florence Nakiwala Kiyingi, Minister of State for Sports Hon. Hamson Obua, CEO Edgar Watson, NCS General Secretary Dr. Bernard Ogwel and UOC President Donald Rukare.

    In April, Onyango announced his retirement from international football, just a few days after another senior player Hassan Wasswa had done the same.

    “I sit here with tears rolling down my eyes because after a lengthy consideration I have come to the decision of retiring from international football with immediate effect,” Onyango said to the disappointment of so many Ugandan football lovers.

    By Toni Senono

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    Arteta Under Pressure As Emery Returns To The Emirates…

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    Unai Emery (R) returns to the Emirates to play against Mikel Arteta's Arsenal

    Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta is under immense pressure to win the UEFA Europa League as the gateway to next season’s European football.

    Arsenal’s entire campaign literally hinges on their Europa League semi-final clash with Villarreal on Thursday evening, where a defeat would almost certainly end the Gunners’ chances of securing continental football for next season.

    Arsenal have a deficit to overturn following a 2-1 reverse in a heated first encounter in Spain last week where both sides had a player sent off at El Madrigal.

    The Gunners’ away goal, struck late on from the spot by Nicolas Pepe, gives them plenty to work with in Thursday’s climactic contest.

    Mikel Arteta’s charges warmed up for their crucial Europa League encounter with a solid 2-0 win at Newcastle on Sunday and though Arsenal’s performance in the north-east could act as a timely confidence-builder, their poor form at home could easily cancel any new found self-belief out.

    Villarreal’s victory last week was their ninth straight win in the Europa League and the Yellow Submarine have yet to taste defeat in the competition this term, a full 13 games into their campaign.

    Manager Unai Emery – a three times winner of the tournament – is a UEL specialist, and the former Arsenal boss will be desperate to show his old employers what they are missing by crushing their dreams of winning silverware.

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    JUST IN: Mourinho Lands New Job In Italy…

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    Jose Mourinho has agreed to become AS Roma manager starting next season

    Former Tottenham Hotspurs manager, Jose Mourinho has agreed to become manager of AS Roma starting next season, the club has confirmed.

    The Italian club expressed delightment to announce an agreement with the Portuguese coach.

    He has signed until June 2024.

    It’s not even yet a month when Spurs Jose Mourinho and his coaching staff were relieved of their duties at the London club.

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