Vipers Sports Club will open up their 2020/21 Confederation of African Football (CAF) Champions League campaign when they engage Al Hilal Omdurman of Sudan in the first leg preliminary round on November 28th at the St Mary’s Stadium, Kitende.
Coach Fred Kajoba’s troops will be under no illusions of the challenges that lie ahead if Vipers want to make it to the group stages of Africa’s elite club competition next year.
The Venoms have faced a couple of teams from different parts of the continent in the past and will for the second time make a trip to Sudan having been there in 2018 to play El Merriekh and will be eager to dump out another Sudanese side.
The Kitende side lost 2-1 away in Khartoum before winning 1-0 at home and progressed on the away goals’ rule after a 2-all aggregate score.
The Venoms went on to face CS Constantine at the qualifying round losing 1-0 away and 2-0 at home. The Algerian outfit knocked them out to the Confederation Cup where we played Tunisia’s CS Sfaxien.
Their pursuit for group qualification has been elusive but each appearance has been a learning curve of sorts and they hope to make it count this time round.
The Sudanese side arrived in Uganda on Tuesday and held various training sessions at the StarTimes Stadium in Lugogo and at St. Mary’s Stadium.
AI Hilal is the home of Uganda Cranes goalkeeper Salim Jamal Magoola.
Hassan Mohamed Hagi will be the centre referee and will be assisted by fellow countrymen in Hamza Hagi Abdi and Suleiman Bashir as the first and second assistant referees respectively.
Omar Abdukadir Artan also from Somalia will be the fourth official while David Gikonyo Mwangi is the Match Commissioner.
Hagi is not new in Uganda having officiated the game between KCCA and Rivers United of Nigeria in the CAF Confederation Cup in 2017.
The winner between Vipers and Al Hilal over the two legs will face either Mauritania’s Nouadhibour or Ghanaian side Asante Kotoko in the first round of the qualifiers before they progress to the group stages.
A minimum of $550,000 (sh2bn) cash prize awaits Vipers should they make it to the group stages.
If Vipers progress to the first round and they are eliminated by either Mauritania’s Nouadhibour or Ghanaian side Asante Kotoko, then they will be subjected to a CAF Confederations Cup play-off round.
No fans will be allowed in the stadium.
CAF Champions League
Saturday, 28th November
Vipers SC Vs Al Hilal Omdurman
St Mary’s stadium, 4 pm
Al Hilal Omdurman Vs Vipers SC