After missing the 2006-07 by a whisker, SC Villa resorted to its graduates from the now defunct ‘Jogoo Young’ academy for the 2007-08 campaign.
Searching for a record 17th league title, the Jogoos came into the season with little hopes given inexperience in the squad but surprisingly, the side put up stellar performances and was only beaten to the title by five points as the championship went to KCCA.
Kawowo Sports’ Ismael Kiyonga takes a look at the youthful side and their whereabouts now.
[Yasin Mugabi in action for KCCA in CECAFA Kagame Cup in Kigali, 2015]
He was in goal for most of the games in the season in which SC Villa let in just twenty four (24) goals. He has played for other clubs; Proline, URA and KCCA but has returned to Villa Park ahead of the 2016-17 season.
Yusuf Jjuuko: He was the team’s first choice right back. Jjuuko was good going forward and his trademark perfect cross was always on show on his good days. The right back has since left the Jogoos and featured for many clubs including SC Villa rivals Express. He spent part of last season at the demoted SC Victoria University.
[Godfrey ‘Wazza’ Walusimbi is now at KPL side Gor Mahia]
Like Jjuuko, Walusimbi was bad news for wingers at left back. Recruited by Jogoo Young from a tour in Mpigi, he was as good going forward as well as defensively. Since leaving SC Villa, Wazza has featured for Vipers, SC Don Bosco in DR Congo and is currently at Gor Mahia in the SportPesa Premier League.
[Tony Ekaliana Ndolo is action for Jogoos]
He was the captain of the team. Born in Kenya, not so many knew he was Kenyan until recently when he was summoned on the Harambee Stars squad. Ndolo forged a great partnership with Joseph Owino and the pair’s understanding of each other’s game eased defending. He was Captain as the Jogoos lifted the 2009 Uganda Cup and has since leaving Villa Park, played for KCCA, Sofapaka and now at Tusker.
[Joseph Owino 19 while at Simba]
His game reading and knowledge of the game made him dependable personnel in the Villa rear-guard in the season. Arguably the most talented defender of his generation, Owino’s career has been hampered by injuries but wherever he has played when fit, he has been dependable.
He is currently training with URA where has had several stints but recently played for Simba in Tanzania.
[Unsung hero Oscar Agaba in action for URA]
Another Jogoo young graduate who played as a defensive midfielder. Agaba’s positional sense in unmatched even at the moment at URA where he plays.
[Mike Azira plays for Colorado Rapids in MLS]
He was arguably among the most talent players on the team who later captained it. Calm, collected and an excellent game reader, Azira always kept both his and opposing fans on tenterhooks with his easy defending as he made football look so easy. He left for US a season later for studies and currently plays in the Major League Soccer with Colorado Rapids.
[Ntambi 5 is joined by Simon Sserunkuma and Simeon Massa in celebration]
Another technically gifted member of the SC Villa side then. A product of Jogoo Young, Ntambi made football look so easy with his eye for long or short range pass and also had an eye for goal.
After quitting SC Villa, he played for Express and also had stints abroad but returned to SC Villa a couple of seasons ago helping them win the 2015 Uganda Cup.
He currently plays in South Africa after leaving Villa Park in 2015.
[Dribbling maestro Steven Bengo takes a penalty against KCCA at Lugogo in 2015]
Without doubt, Bengo remains the most technically gifted and talent player of the current but outgoing generation.
Versatile enough to play as a number 10, central midfield and comfortable on either wings, he was the brain of the team who created as well as chipped in with goals.
On top of that, he was an expertise in dead ball situations, dictating tempo and an inspiration to be precise.
In that same year, he runner up in the Nile Special Player of the Season Awards, behind Brian Umony.
Bengo’s star has since fallen after failing to settle at Yanga (Tanzania), URA, KCCA and Soana.
As recent as last month, he was released by Kenyan side Nakumatt that plays in the FKF National Super League.
[Augustine Nsumba now plays for Bul.]
He played as a number 10 behind lead striker Kadenge and was never a disappointment.
Nsumba was once described by pundits as Uganda’s next big thing. His close ball control, ability to beat me with ease and shoot with both feet made him standout.
After leaving SC Villa, Nsumba featured for a Danish side before settling at URA on return from Europe.
He made a return to Villa Park in 2014 helping the side win the 2015 Uganda Cup but left immediately.
Currently, he is skipper at Jinja based side Bul. FC
Oscar Kadenge: He joined SC Villa from Kenya’s AFC Leopards and was the most experienced member of the team.
Kadenge led the line with excellence and his pace upfront opened up many defences. On a number of occasions though, he complained about the youngsters’ over holding of the ball when releasing him would be a good option.
“We would be winning all games but sometimes, these young footballers resort to Kilikili football.”
Kadenge has since returned to Kenya and played for Ingwe last season.