A lion’s share of sportsmen world over are nurtured from the grass-root part by way of nicely deliberate coaching periods.
A fraction choose up the interest at the latter stage, most get trained and turn out to be perfectionists within the varied games undertaken.
Uganda Revenue Authority (URA) Football Club defender Benjamin Nyakoojo will boldly attest he started playing serious football while in senior five at the St Mary’s Boarding Secondary School, Kitende.
“I kicked off my football career at St. Mary’s Kitende SSS from 2015 to 2016. Later, that year I was was promoted to the senior team, Vipers SC where I instantly became a force and got first team football.” Nyakoojo recounts.
Before that, Nyakoojo was studying at Nyakasura SSS in Fort Portal where football was never a priority.
It was during the La Mennais tournament as he was featuring for St Edwards Bukuumi where he was spotted by David Bbaale, then a coach at St Mary’s Boarding SS Kitende.
It was during the Le Mennais tournament hosted by St Henry’s Kitovu where I was scouted by coach Bbaale (David). Interestingly, I was playing for St Edwards Bukuumi. So, I was admitted at St Mary’s Boarding SSS, Kitende and the rest is now history.
Benjamin Nyakoojo, URA Football Club defender
At the end of the 2016 – 2017 season, Nyakoojo left Vipers and transferred to Uganda Revenue Authority (URA) for the 2018-2019 season.
On how he mastered the game very quickly, Nyakoojo owes it to training, the passion and dedication to improve day after day.
“I was ever keen and eager to learn a thing or another. I loved playing football and was ever willing to learn” Nyakoojo adds.
Nyakoojo was born to Ben and Gladys Kiiza in Harugongo village in Fort Portal city in Western Uganda on 15th May 1995.
He studied at Light Primary School, Bulenga (lower primary to P4) before sitting his Primary Leaving Examinations at Kibiito Primary school in Fort Portal.
He had his O-level studies at Nyakasura School, Fort portal and completed the A-Level education at St Mary’s SSS Kitende where he studied Mathematics, Economics, Fine Art and ICT.
He is nick-named “Airforce one” for the awesome aerial strength during a football duel.
Nyakoojo is also a great tackler, man-marker and passer of the ball over long distances.
For the past seasons, he has been a fulcrum of URA’s backline, rewarded by the qualification to the CAF Confederation Cup, a feat achieved after the national league was abruptly halted due to the Coronavirus pandemic as the tax collectors were second behind champions Express.
He anticipates a good performance on continental level.
“Together with the other teammates, we expect to perform well during the CAF Confederation cup. Of course, early preparations will remain key” Nyakoojo states.
This season alone, Nyakoojo had four man of the match performances in the Star-Times Uganda Premier League.
Nyakoojo recorded two man of the match accolades in the 2019 FUFA Drum tournament as he turned out for Tooro Province.
He admires former Vipers teammate Halid Lwaliwa and Spanish defender Sergio Ramos García.
The toughest opponent ever faced is forward Bashir Mutanda, now at Mbarara City.
On any day, he would prefer a well cooked meal of plantain, maize flour, rice and beans.
- Full Names: Benjamin Nyakoojo
- Nick-Name: Air Force 1
- Parents: Ben Kiiza & Gladys Kiiza
- Date of Birth: 15th May 1995
- Place of Birth: Harugongo – Fort Portal city, Western Uganda
- Education: Light Primary School, Bulenga; Kibiito Primary School – Fort Portal (P5-P7), Nyakasura School – Fort portal (S1-S4), St Mary’s Boarding Secondary School, Kitende (A-Level-MEA/ICT)
- Height & weight: 1.9m/85kg
- Club Career: Vipers Sports Club (2015-2017), URA (2018 – To-date)
- Positions of play: Defence, midfield
- Strong foot: Right
- Key weapons: Ball interception, good command, aerial strength
- Roles Models: Halid Lwaliwa (Vipers and Uganda Cranes), Sergio Ramos García (Spain)
- Toughest opponent: Bashir Mutanda (Mbarara City)
- Favourite Dish: Plantain, Maize Flour, Rice & Beans
- Honors: 4 man of the match awards (2020/2021 Uganda Premier League), 2 man of the match awards (2019, FUFA Drum, Named on FUFA Drum Best XI 2019)