Ulinzi Stars edge Sofapaka on penalties to book Tusker in semifinals

© Sofapaka

FKF CUP Ulinzi Stars edge Sofapaka on penalties to book Tusker in semifinals

Festus Chuma 17:45 - 29.04.2023

Boniface Muchiri put Ulinzi ahead in the 38th minute but Sofapaka leveled matters in the 42nd minute through Adis Panoam.

Ulinzi Stars have booked themselves a spot in the semifinals of the FKF Cup after securing a 5-4 win on penalties over Sofapaka in a clash played at Police Sacco Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

The Soldiers dominated the last eight contest from start to finish but could not convent most of the open chances with the Benard Mwalala-coached side needing penalties to advance to the final four after a 1-1 draw.

Ulinzi started the better of the two teams and had the first effort on goal in the ninth minute, but Hilary Simiyu’s attempt from just outside the box went narrowly wide off the target.

Three minutes later, the Soldiers had another first shot on goal when Boniface Muchiri unleashed a powerful shot from long range, but his effort also went wide.

On the half-hour mark, Ben Stanely Omondi came within inches of giving Sofapaka the lead, but his shot from 18 yards out shaved the wrong side of the post.

The Soldiers broke the deadlock in the 38th minute through a stunning 18-yard right-footed free-kick from Boniface Muchiri into the top left corner.

Sofapaka took control of the game after that and piled pressure on the Ulinzi defense and they managed to level matters in the 43rd minute following some great work by Levin Ochieng.

The skillful player sent a long cross into the Ulinzi box which hit the crossbar before landing on the legs of South Sudan international Adis Panom, who fired past Stephen Ochieng much to the delight of the Batoto ba Mungu supporters.

Both sides were level 1-1 at the interval following a lively first half in South C.

Sofapaka continued to boss proceedings in the second half but they were not having any better luck in search of a second goal.

Roddy Manga steered a header wide of the right post from a corner and Evans Makari headed Panom's cross past the other post five minutes later before Tyson Omondi nodded a corner off target in the 66th minute.

Bonventure Muchika came close with a header of his own two minutes later that flew inches wide of the right post from a free-kick, while Simon Masaka was finally given some work to do when he kept out shots from Stephen Etyang and Muchiri inside the area.

Royal Okal threatened to put Sofapaka ahead five minutes from time with a header that narrowly went wide of the left post.

With no meaningful offensive threat from in the closing minutes, the contest would eventually be settled via a penalty shootout. Stephen Okola missed the final spot kick for Sofapaka to hand Ulinzi victory.