The 2019/20 Uganda Premier League winners Vipers SC lost 0-1 to Sudanese giants Al Hilal in the first leg of the Qualifiers of CAF Champions League preliminaries at St Mary’s Stadium, Kitende.
Sudan striker Waleed Bakhet Hamid scored from close range the only goal of the game in the 26th minute with a half volley after getting the Vipers defense off guard.
Despite Vipers dominating most of the second half, they failed to get proceedings into their own way even after the introduction of new signings David Bagoole, Paul Mucureezi, Ibrahim Orit, and old guard, Mzee Dan Sserunkuma.
Congolese striker Lobi Caesar Manzoki failed to show up in the game and almost had no impact with his only moment coming when had a penalty appeal waived after he was tripped in the forbidden area.
Milton Karisa also failed to impress and was taken off in the 44th minute after while youngster Karim Watambala and former Express FC skipper Dissan Galiwango put up the better performance for the home side.
The 1-0 defeat means the Uganda Premier League side will have to get maximum points at a better goal difference in the return leg on December 6 if they are to improve on their chances of making it to the next round.
The winner between Vipers and Al Hilal will face Mauritania’s Nouadhibour or Ghanaian side Asante Kotoko in the first round of the qualifiers before the eventual winner progresses to the group stages.
A minimum of $550,000 (sh2bn) cash prize awaits any team that makes it to the group stages and all the Venoms need U is to make it past the two opponents in both qualifying rounds.