BUL football club gave real account of themselves on their first ever appearance in a CAF competition.
With both sides making their debut in the CAF confederations cup, the Eastern Giants held firm to record a 0-0 draw against Egyptians Future FC on a historic evening at St. Mary’s stadium, Kitende.
Ibrahim Kazindula came closest for BUL with several efforts from free kicks, Simon Peter Oketch saw his attempt fly wild, as Karim Ndugwa’s header was gloved out for a corner while goalkeeper Saidi Keni had to be alert to deny Ahmed Atef Mohamed in the first half.
Alex Isabirye’s side knew a clean sheet and a positive result altogether would be a good start on this new journey and they kept their defensive discipline throughout.
They might even have won it, had Ndugwa connected well with Hillary Onek’s cross at the hour mark before he saw his effort inside the box superbly saved by away goalkeeper – Mahmoud Abdelrehim Ahmed in the additional minutes after the normal play time.
However, the visitors dominated the possession, and it was Atef who had the first effort on goal but the forward headed straight at Keni.
Atef again gave the Eastern Giants a worry on 22 minutes when his fiercely struck shot whistled over bar.
BUL’s first attempt came seventeen minutes into the game when Oketch was found in the box but his overhead kick was deflected for a corner.
They began the second period with more purpose after the introduction of teenager Reagan Kalyowa, but three minutes after the interval, Atef came close to giving Future FC the goal they craved for after he was set clean on goal by Ahmed Elsayed Reffat but Keni made a well timed race off his line in a one on one situation to keep the status quo.
Future simply had to keep on pressing and that opened spaces for BUL going forward, with Ibrahim Mugulusi, Martin Aprem and Kalyowa having a go at goal although their efforts did not yield.
The threat never went away for the visitors with the scores deadlocked, Kalyowa was fouled close to the area and Samir Saad put up a block when Kazindula struck from 25 yards
A huge chance for BUL to seal the game came and went in the extra four minutes when Ndugwa rose highest from Ayiko’s delivery, but Mahmoud Abdelrehim showed incredible reflexes to repel his header.
The two sides will convene again the next weekend (Saturday September 17) in Cairo, Egypt for the second leg of the preliminary round of the confederations cup.
Saidi Keni (GK), Emmanuel Obua (Reagan Kalyowa 46′), Walter Ochora, Ibrahim Kazindula, Ibrahim Mugulusi (Frank Kalanda 68′), Douglas Muganga, Richard Ayiko, Pascal Ngobi, Karim Ndugwa, Hillary Onek (Martin Aprem 63′), Simon Peter Oketch (Anthony Mayanja 80′)
Emmanuel Kalyowa,Jerome Kirya,Tom Ikara,Ibrahim Nsimbe, Benon Tahomera.