2012 KPL Fixtures

From michezoafrika.com

According to the fixtures, the 2012 KPL season will kick off on February 11th. This will be preceded by 2012 SuperSport/DStv Cup match o 4th February between Gor Mahia and Tusker FC.

First three rounds fixtures

12 Feb 12 Sun 3:00 Thika United Gor Mahia-Thika ,

22 Feb 12 Wed 7:00 Gor Mahia vs Muhoroni Youth-City,3:00

27 Feb 12 Mon 7pm Tusker vs Gor Mahia-Nyayo

Selenga deuce sinks Kisumu combined

(Courtesy of futaa.com)

Gor Mahia experienced the first hiccup in their Nyanza trip on Friday 30 December when they played Kisumu Combined in Kisumu City in their only game of the day on the penultimate day of the tour.

One down

The country’s representatives in the CAF Confederations cup, with clean sheets throughout the tour, were stunned by the underdogs as they went into the break a goal down.

Dimonde double

However, they came back with a better strategy in the second half and Congolese forward Dimonde Selenga Mangili spared them blushes when he raced to a quick brace that ensured the game ended 2 – 1 in favor of Gor Mahia.

Hugo Nzangu, one of the team’s main marksmen spoke to futaa.com after the game and said he was satisfied with the outcome as he feels the opposition was strong enough to have stirred an upset.

Good opposition

-It was a good win, because Kisumu Combined did not give us an easy time. They are a good side and from them I can say we have learnt a thing or two, Hugo told futaa.com.

The win means Gor Mahia have won all but one in the tour as they prepare to finalize the Nyanza tour with a game against Bondo on Saturday 31 December.

Tour of Muranga is an excellent idea

According to the story below from futaa.com, Gor Mahia will tour Muranga county. Adding a tour of places like Muranga to the annual tour of Nyanza is an excellent way to introduce the team to the people and hence create new fans. This is especially true for young children. If you win them early, you can turn them into long fans. Not only should Kogalo play friendlies

This writer was a ball boy at the Nyahururu stadium in 1988 when Kogalo went their to train for the upcoming Africa cup quarter final match against Inter Club of Congo. Every day Gor Mahia held open training sessions. The stadium in Nyahururu would be filled to the brim with fans coming to watch Kogalo plays who had become famous after the Africa cup triumph in 1987. I would hear the locals name the plays “Oyo ni Otieno Sorro” and “Oyo ne Onyago Fudi” in the local accent. All in all it was a good public relations exercise for the club.

Story below Courtesy of futaa.com

Vice Chairman Faiz Magak has confirmed that after the Nyanza tour, Gor will organize another to Muranga, before February 2012.

-Football administrators from Muranga have requested that we pay them homage, and we intend to do this in January, he told Futaa.com.

-They [football representatives] have suggested 22 January, but we have to confirm on the suitability of the date with the technical bench.

All Objectives of Nyanza tour have been met

Story from futaa.com

Gor Mahia have met all objectives they had set to, at the beginning of their seven-day Nyanza tour, which kicked-off on Monday 26 December. According to the club’s Vice Chairman, Faiz Ochieng, the team has been able to take its influence to the grassroots, ultimately winning even more fans.

No chest thumping or bragging here, with the Nyanza preseason tour advancing well, Gor Mahia Secretary General George Bwana believes all the club had targeted for in the excursion has been reached and so far the tour is a success.

Three objectives

Mr George Bwana, who was speaking to futaa.com, acknowledged that the whole event was supposed to pay off in three great ways: taking the team to the fans, trying out new players and to scout for outstanding talent; which he says have been successful so far.

Aims achieved

-We went to Nyanza for three major reasons, first we wanted our fans to meet the players since we observed that they could be starved as we play most of our games in Nairobi, we also aimed at trying out our new players so that we can know how best to use them, in preparation for next season, thirdly we also wanted to see if we can find some untapped talent and help develop. So far I can say we have achieved these, he said.

Nyanza tour update

Gor Mahia overcame newly promoted Muhoroni Youth 2-0. The match was played on on Thursday Dec 29. The goals came via Victor Ali who scored from the spot and Solomon Nasio. The line up in the match against Muhoroni youth was as follows:

(Jerry Onyango, Yusuf juma, David owino, Christopher Wekesa, Antony Akumu, Solomon Nasio, Victor Ali, Roy Okal, Makori Duncan, Wyclife Ochomo, John Kiplagat)

The next match of the end of year tour will be against Kisumu combined. This match will be at the Kisumu show grounds.

Lets look back at 2011: A year of peaks and valleys

The year started on a bright note with Kogalo beating the Ghanaian national team 2-1. New signing Ezekiel Odera looked like he was going to step right into Blackberry’s shoes when he scored the match opener against the Ghanaians with Collins Okoth scoring the other. Speaking of Blackberry, Gor Mahia had just bid farewell to him after a short but stelllar career which ended with him being named footballer of the year and one of the 100 most promising players by the website goal.com.

Ezekiel Odera was sensational against Ghana

But Kogalo fans euphoria soon hit the ground with a thud. It came when they went down 0-3 to Rangers FC. Some Fans reacted by disrupting the match with a hail of stones leading Supersport with no option but to ban Kogalo matches from being televised. A second fracas happened in the top 8 match against Ulinzi when Kogalo fans protesting poor officiating went on rampage causing damage worth close to KSH 1 million at Nyayo stadium. Kogalo were then disqualified from the Super 8.

On the field, Gor Mahia were slowly recovering after a slow start. New signing Moses Odhiambo aka “Lucky Dube” proved his mettle by scoring several crucial goes. Most notable was his superb freekick against Thika United at City stadium. Odhiambo’s rise was most welcome because some of the youngstars who had shone previously were not in the same form. Most notable was “Teddy” Akumu whose loss of form was inexplicable. Perhaps he was demoralized at not being selected by Randers FC of Denmark after he attended trials. Meanwhile the other new signing Ezekiel Odera who had shone brilliantly for KCB in 2010 was having a tougher time finding his footing. All in all he scored only one goal in the first leg of the league. His sudden loss of form is not easy to explain either. Maybe he was unable to function well in the system of long balls that Zico had started to introduce. Or maybe he is one of those players who can only thrive when playing for a team without demanding fans, much like David Odhiambo “Deo” who was the league top scorer when he played for Re-Union but could hardly play when he joined Kogalo in 1992.

Gor Mahia soon recovered to record critical wins over defending champions Ulinzi, Stima and others. The month of March was highlighted by a tour from the U-23 side of Brazilian outfit. Kogalo outplayed the Brazilians and outbraziled them. In the end Palmeiras won 2-1 and their captain had some words of advice “Playing beautiful football means nothing if you do not score”. Telling words especially since they are coming from a Brazilian. The nation known for “Jogo bonito”.

Another high water mark for the club came in the month of April when they landed a landmark sponsorship from Tuzo milk thanks to the diligent efforts of Chairman Ambrose Rachier and his team. At the time it was the most lucrative deal signed by the team. New jerseys were unveiled and that was when some sourness regarding the sponsorship appeared with many fans faulting the fact that Kogalo only got 10% of the proceeds of jersey sales.

Players show off their new Tuzo emblazoned jerseys

As the first leg ended, Gor Mahia’s unsatisfactory form neccesitated some changes. Out went fan favourite Ibrahim Kitawi who joined Tusker. In came Demonde Selenga, Wycliff Ochomo and Moses Otieno. Gor Mahia were in fine form midway through the year. Most memorable was the 3-1 win over arch rivals AFC Leopards that sent fans spriralling into the sky with joy. Demonde Selenga made a dream debut scoring within minutes of coming on as a substitute. Wycliff Ochomo had also scored the first goal in what was his first game for Kogalo. Dan Makori rounded up the score. But soon cracks started to appear. The club despite having beaten AFC 3-1 were not particularly playing well. Trouble really started when they lost to SoNy 0-1. Matters came to a head when Kogalo lost to bottom club Congo United in the FKL cup match. Player morale seemed to have nosedived. A reprieve however saw Gor Mahia stay in the competition as the best looser, much to the chagrin of other KPL teams. The low point of the entire season came when they lost 0-3 to arch rivals Ingwe. By then disillusioned fans had started to abandon the team. Others accosted club officials including coach Zedekiah Otieno. The loss while not unexpected was sobering. When Kogalo lost to Bandari on a rain soaked Mbaraki pitch, there seemed to be no respite. Even replacing coach Zico with his assistant Anaba Awono did not seem to remedy the situation. Chairman Rachier meanwhile was blaming Mohammed Hatimy for sabotaging the team to discredit Rachier as a candidate for the FKL chairmanship.

So when Gor Mahia were pitted against AFC only 2 weeks after loosing 0-3, no one expected them to win. AFC fans were certain of victory. The match was the semi final of the FKF cup. But a superb header from Moses Odhiambo sent the aspirations of AFC fans crashing. It came after a superbly floated freekick by Moses Otieno. Irate AFC fans who expected a repeat victory were in disbilief and resorted to causing the abandonment of the match which was then awarded to Kogalo. That win was the high water mark of the season for the team. It marked the end of a long spell of poor results. It marked a rising of the ashes of a team that had all but been eliminated from the FKF cup and written off by pundits.

Moses Odhiambo and Kevin Omondi celebrate the all important goal against AFC

A week later Gor Mahia overcame a tough Sofapaka side at the city stadium, winning 1-0. They thus booked a ticket to play in the 2012 Confederations cup, sparking massive celebrations at the city stadium. The all important goal came from the fleet footed Edwin Lavatsa following a right wing cross from Dan Makori. Gor Mahia ended the season on a sound note, earning revenge wins over SoNy Sugar and most notably Rangers. They finished 4th in the league.

As the league ended. the club held its annual general meeting, ushering in a new office. Ambrose Rachier retained his post as Chairman. However most of the rest of the previous officers fell by the wayside.

Other positives for the team were the emergence of certain players. Eric Masika had a good year. Moses Otieno who was misused at Tusker became a solid player at Kogalo. Moses Odhiambo scored several crucial goals. There was some regression with players like Musa Mohammed, Anthony Akumu and to a lesser extent Kevin Omondi who lost his place in the national team. Jerim Onyango in goal had an up and down year.

All in all , the fans a have a look to look forward to in 2012. Anaba Awono has brought back a modicum of the swift attacking football that Kogalo had become famous for. The arrival of Rama Salim and Ivo Mapunda amongs others will shore up some of the weaknesses. The team has retained Ezekiel Odera. Hopefully Anaba Awono will find a formula to make him successful. Odera is clearly a good player. And there are signs that “Teddy” is slowly regaining his form. Defensive stalwart Eric Masika has departed but Kogalo will march forward as usual.

Gor Mahia 2 Silibwet 0

Courtesy of StarAfrica.com

Kogalo beat Silibwet FC in a match played on boxing day at Silibwet grounds in Bomet. Gor new custodian Wycliffe Kasaya signed from Bandari made all the difference by pulling off several acrobatic saves to spare his team from further punishment.
After a barren first half,  Wycliffe Ochomo netted the match opener in the 54th minute after being set up by Dancan Makori.
Earlier in the first half, Guest player Hugo Nzoka  squandered a clear chance when he beat the entire Silibwet defence before slicing the ball over the bar.
Duncan Owiti who was rarely used in the Kenya Premier League made his presence  felt when he netted the second goal with a clinical finish off after finishing a good  move from the midfield.
The match was part of their Nyanza tour itinerary. The team will on Tuesday face off with Suba Combined before traveling to Kendubay for another friendly tie slated for later in the day.
The team will then travel to Oyugis and Muhoroni on December 29th before making a stop over in Kisumu on December 30th where they play Kisumu Combined at the Kisumu Showground.
On December 31, Gor K’ogalo will storm Bondo University where they will take on Bondo Combined in another friendly match before heading to Gem for a new year’s party that will be hosted by club Chairman Ambrose Rachier in his Gem house.

Gor Mahia defeat Homa Bay

From Michezoafrika.com

Gor Mahia took only 19 minutes to thrash Homa Bay Combined 3-0 in a friendly match on Tuesday morning at Homa Bay Stadium.

John Kiplangat 12th minute strike opened the scoring while new boy Yusuf Juma  scored his debut goal in the 17th minute.

Demonde Selenga sealed the hosts fate when completed the rout in the 19th minute.

Gor Mahia are in Nyanza for a pre season tour.

Happy Trails Ezekiel Odera

Ezekiel Odera was signed by Kogalo amid tremendous media hype. He had been one of the league’s leading scorers while playing for KCB. Fans saw him as the heir apparent to Blackberry who had just departed to Denmark.

He started out brightly in pre-season friendlies, most notably the one against Ghana. It looked like the Kogalo attack would not skip a beat with the departure of Blackberry. However he was unable to find the net often. During the first leg he scored only one league goal.

Odera is a proven goal-scorer and will thrive in a different team. Perhaps the system of play at Kogalo did not suit him. Or perhaps at his age, he is not ready to play under the pressure that is playing for Kogalo. Some players thrive under pressure and some thrive only in a relaxed atmosphere with less demanding fans. Fans will remember David Odhiambo “Deo” who in the early 90s was the league’s leading scorer twice with close to 20 goals while playing for Re-Union. But at Gor Mahia he was inneffective.

With that in mind, lets wish Odera the best. There is no reason that the club should hold onto him if he is not interested in staying.

According to michezoafrika.com Odera thanked the Gor Mahia fans for their support  to his team “It is unfortunate that I have to move, I want them to understand I need to develop my career by getting more playing time. In my few years of playing soccer, I have never received such support for my team like I did at Gor.The fans are so passionate about soccer  and I hope one day most of our premier league clubs will get such support.” He concluded.

He has been linked with a possible move to Rangers FC. Odera ,the 2010 second best top scorer has had a quiet season at Gor Mahia since joining the side from KCB early in the 2011 season.

His contract with Gor Mahia will expire on 10th of January in 2012 and he has already announced he will not renew the same. He has opened talks with Rangers FC though he previously announced he could rejoin his former club KCB where he is welcome with open arms.

“A player needs playing time, It is very unfortunate because I have not been able to get that here (Gor). I can’t wait for my contract to end, I will soon be a free agent to move to another club before the start of next season.” He said.