Newly promoted NEC Football Club has been making a significant impact in the 2023/2024 StarTimes Uganda Premier League, and this success is no accident, according to head coach Hussein Mbalangu.
NEC has secured victories in four of their first five games, with only BUL and Kitara boasting better records, both winning all five of their matches.
"We are diligently preparing our players both mentally and physically, which is the reason for their continuous improvement," Mbalangu said after his side's 2-0 win over KCCA FC at Lugogo on Thursday evening.
He further elaborated on the team's objectives: "Our primary goal is to secure our place in the league. Following that, we aim for a second-place finish, and ultimately, we want to play attractive football without excessive pressure."
Mbalangu highlighted the team's unwavering commitment to hard work: "Our rigorous training regimen makes the actual games seem much easier.
"We train with the intensity of lions, ensuring that our players are in excellent shape, physically robust, and less susceptible to being outperformed."
While it's uncommon for newly promoted teams to openly discuss title aspirations, Mbalangu isn't ruling out the possibility.
"If we continue winning all our games, we have a shot at the championship, as the team that lifts the trophy must accumulate the necessary points."
NEC's recent victory over KCCA FC showcased their dedication and resilience. Their strategic approach, deep understanding of their opponents, and emphasis on their style of play were instrumental in securing their fourth win.
"We observed that our opponents were vulnerable to setpiece goals, so we placed an emphasis on winning free-kicks," Mbalangu praised Cromwell Rwothomio's second goal, which came from a setpiece.
In the upcoming fixtures, NEC will face Gadaffi, Wakiso Giants, and URA at Lugogo, with away matches in Luzira and Masindi against Maroon and Kitara, respectively.