Gor Mahia warming up for Ulinzi

Gor Mahia will take on Ulinzi stars on Saturday in what promises to be a difficult encounter. Ulinzi are in good form and are third in the table.

On Monday Gor Mahia warmed up for the encounter by beating Nairobi Stima 3-0. The match was an opportunity to give players who did not play over the weekend an opportunity to stay sharp and play their way into the starting line-up.

“They played very well against Nairobi Stima, it was good to give them game time because they did not feature over the weekend. Our policy is for each and every player to have some game time each week and so the friendly match was important for those who did not play over the weekend.” said Frank Ouna to futaa.com

Ouna (middle) pictured upon arrival in Gabon in 2014

Having a strong bench is good for the club because as the league proceeds, players will start to miss matches due to injuries.

“As a Technical bench we were impressed with their performance, they give us much options in the league which is important for us as the league progresses” continued Ouna

Gor Mahia won 3-0 with goals from George Odhiambo, Timothy Otieno and Bernard Odhiambo.

But Frank Ouna knows that Ulinzi will be a difficult proposition and the team is preparing accordingly.

““It will be a massive match for us in our bid to retain the league title, but it will also pose a threat on our unbeaten run. They are unbeaten in five matches meaning they already have the momentum. But it is a great side which will give us problem” said Ouna to goal.com

And coach Frank Matano is always heavily motivated to play against Gor Mahia, something Ouna is well aware of.

““Matano [Robert] has a well-balanced squad with good offensive and defensive players. We will just aim to be disciplined and be very cautious. Our main objective will be to frustrate them, keep possession and try and penetrate their rear guard,”

KPL Player of the Month to receive cash awards

KPL players will now be doubly motivated to play well.  Sports Journalists Association of Kenya and betting company SportsPesa on Tuesday launched a monthly KPL player motivation programme that will see performers earn cash prize of 50,000 shillings, a 42 inch Television and a special trophy.
The partnership, which will be renewed annually and is aimed encouraging competition and hard work amongst players in the top tier Kenyan league.

“We have been in the local market for one and a half years and it is now time to engage in some Corporate Social Responsibility ventures in football and boxing. We are going to put more money next year and we look forward to a good partnership,” said Kester Shimonyo to the Standard. Shimonyo is the chief marketing officer of Sportpesa.

According to SJAK secretary General Mike Okinyi, a special panel of judges will be picked from football writers who will also rely on statistics from the governing body KPL to make meritocratic judgments.

Judging who is the best player in the league will require a keen eye among journalists. The lazy journalists ones or the ones who are not knowledgeable enough will only go by who is scoring. But as Chairman Ambrose Rachier said during the occasion, there is more to being a good player than pure statistics.

“This is a good initiative that will impact positively in the field. It is not about the scores but the performance, work rate and the contribution of the players in the league. It will go a long way in improving the standards of football in the country,” said Rachier.

Coach Nuttall is contented with win

Gor Mahia’s Scottish coach Frank Nuttall is happy with the 2-0 win over Ushuru that put three more points in Gor Mahia’s bag. But as usual, Nuttall is taking a long term perspective with the full understanding that there is stilla long way to go.

“Three points are always welcome and I am grateful that the players did well to get them which gives us an edge, keeping us at the top of the standings. The performance was really great and encouraging and will motivate us going to the next matches.

Nuttall thinks this was the best match Gor Mahia has played this season.

“So far in the season I think this was our best performance of the season and I am very impressed. We have shown good consistency and I want us to continue that way; our focus now shift to the next game,” he said.

Gor Mahia have indeed come a long way this season. In January, Gor Mahia signed several new players, many of whom dissapointed. The team was playing poorly as coach Nuttall told fans that the team was still gelling. But fans were losing patience as Gor Mahia lost to teams like Bandari and left fans asking how long the team was taking to gel. Clearly Nuttall knew exactly what he was doing. The forwardline combination of Kagere and Olunga is starting to gain an understanding and even the defence is now starting to learn how to play with each other as evidenced by their recent clean sheets.

Gor Mahia 2 Ushuru 0

Gor Mahia returned to their winning ways when they beat Ushuru 2-0 at Nyayo stadium. And the win came against the backdrop of players staging a go-slow to demand payment of salary and bonus arrears. Players had initially staged a sit-in and it was not clear whether they whether they would eventually take to the field.

But when Gor Mahia eventually took to the field, they immediately took command of the game. Barely a minute into the game, Michael Olunga met a cross from Meddie Kagere but his header crashed against the post with the Ushuru goalkeeper Samuel Odhiambo left hapless.

In the 6th minute, Geoffrey Walusimbi picked up a pass from Ali Abondo. But his effort was foiled by Richard Mboyi. The Ushuru custodian was kept busy having to pull off saves from Sibomana and Meddie Kagere.

But the deadlock was finally broken in the 31st minute when Michael Olunga intercepted a pass from David Otieno. The latter was attempting to pass the ball back to his goalkeeper. But he mistimed his pass. Olunga pounced and scored. Gor Mahia went into the breather leading 1-0.

When the second half started, Gor Mahia picked up where they left off. The duo of Kagere and Olunga combined once again resulting in Olunga setting up Kagere to score the second goal in the 46th minute.

With Gor Mahia taking a 2-0 lead, Ushuru started make desperate attempts to come back into the game. Ushuru’s best attempt came in the 70th minute when Hussein Mohamed sent a fierce shot towards the Gor Mahia goal. Boniface Oluoch was forced to dive and parry the shot.

Ushuru continued to pile the pressure and Collins Okoth “Gattusso” was cautioned by the referee for a rough tackle. Second half sub, Evans Kiwanuka gave Gor Mahia some fearful moments. First he hit the crossbar with a fierce header then minutes later he forced Boniface Oluoch into yet another save.

Gor Mahia were able to maintain a clean sheet in large part due to Boniface Oluoch’s heroics.

Starting Line-up: Bonface Oluoch – Musa Mohammed – Karim Nizigiyimana – Abouba Sibomana – Harun Shakava – Ali Abondo – Meddie Kagere – Collins Okoth – Michael Olunga (Innocent Wafula 87’)- Khalid Aucho (Eric Ochieng 90’) – Godfrey Walusimbi

Unused Subs: Jerim Onyango – Ronald Otieno – Bernard Odhiambo- -Ernest Wendo – Timothy Otieno

Trouble at Gor Mahia

As Gor Mahia prepare to play Ushuru FC on Sunday, all is not well in camp. Players are disgruntled due to what they call lack of good communication from officials about salary and bonus arrears.

“The office should be honest with us and give us specifics on when to get money. We are committed to winning, they should also commit to paying when they promise,” said a senior player to supersport.com

Team EC member Ronald Ngala has assured that the officials are working diligently to resolve the issues.

“The players’ welfare is top in our agenda. We are working to ensure every penny they are owed is paid. The only problem has been cash flow issues,”

Some Gor Mahia players are owed salary arrears dating back to December according to supersport.com

Fake Tickets

That notwithstanding, there has been complains of money disappearing from the gates. Some officials are said to be printing fake tickets and selling them hence denying the club revenue.

In fact many of the troublemakers who were hurling foreign objects and nearly caused stoppage of the match against Sofapaka are said to be people who bought fake tickets.

Despite these reports, the officials who are said to be creating fake tickets have yet to be named.

Dealing with counterfeit club merchandise

Posted by Blogger Oduor12

I was once told by an officer from the ACA that it very simple for GMFC officials to approach them and they can effectively deal with the issue of fake jersey and so by extension any fake GMFC products. They simply pose as buyers then the seller has to prove that he is sourcing his products from the legitimate source.
Another way is to make the product widely available in known supermarkets.
Unless EC brings the mysteries of “gate collections” in this project then it should be able to cushion the club’s finances a great deal.

About ACA

The Anti-Counterfeit Agency was established under the Anti-Counterfeit Act 2008 as a State Corporation with the mandates to enlighten and inform the public on matters relating to counterfeiting, combat counterfeiting, trade and other dealings in counterfeit goods, devise and promote training programs to combat counterfeiting and co-ordinate with national, regional or international organizations involved in combating counterfeiting.

It is a state corporation currently within the Ministry of Industrialization. Although the Act was passed by Kenya’s Parliament in 2008, it came into force on 1st July 2009 with the principal aim of prohibiting trade in counterfeit goods. The Agency came into operation in June 2010.

The Vision of the Agency is that it aspires to be the global leader in combating counterfeiting.

Its Mission is to combat counterfeiting and prohibit trade in counterfeit goods through training, research, consumer awareness and co-ordination with national, regional and international organizations in the effective enforcement of intellectual property rights.

The Motto of the Agency is: educate, enforce, eliminate

The mandate of the Agency is clearly indicated in section 5 of the Act. The Act mandates the Agency to:

Enlighten and inform the public on matters relating to counterfeiting;
Combat counterfeiting, trade and other dealings in counterfeit goods in Kenya in accordance with this Act;
Devise and promote training programs on combating counterfeiting;
Co-ordinate with national, regional or international organizations involved in combating counterfeiting;
Cary out any other functions prescribed for it under any of the provisions of this Act or under any other written law; and
Perform any other duty that may directly or indirectly contribute to the attainment of the foregoing.

Core Values

teamwork & commitment,
customer focus,
corporate social responsibility

Anti-Counterfeit Agency
Kenyatta Avenue,
Telposta Towers, 4th Floor,
P.O. Box, 47771-00100,
Nairobi, Kenya.
Hotline : 020 2280111

Strong debut for Gor Mahia bread

Gor Mahia bread is already a best seller. According to a report on capitalfm.co.ke, the bread has been selling 130,000 loaves per day since it was launched. Club official Ronald Ngala told Capital Sport the novel sponsorship deal in local football is pushing 130,000 pieces.

“This is the way to go and the selling is going up as we speak we are getting Sh130, 000 per day so there is a possibility for the figures to rise up to Sh200, 000 a day. The company is set to spread its supply to Nairobi but at the moment it’s only available in Western Kenya and it’s doing very great.” said Ngala to capital FM

Ngala mentioned that the club is still seeking other sponsors.

“We are still in talks with other potential sponsors but I can say we are heading on the right direction. We are set to launch the player’s welfare and Sacco,” he continued

To stem misappropriation of funds; Gor will be conducting monthly audit before the 10th of every month the Ngala added.

That is good news for Gor Mahia fans who are always concerned about misapropriation of funds. Nothing would derail the enthusiasm of fans buying bread than reports suggesting the funds are being misused.

Secondly the club will now have to watch out for pirates. In 2010, Gor Mahia introduced jerseys branded with the club’s name. The project was initially succesful until pirates started to sell fake jerseys. And before you know it, fans were only buying fake jerseys since they came cheaper.  And now there are reports of club stewards peddling fake tickets during the Gor Mahia – Sofapaka match.

Another area of concern is price gouging. There are already reports of the bread selling for Ksh 50 in Homa Bay instead of the proposed price of Ksh 38. There are stories of a supplier in Umoja who managed to get some of the bread and is selling at Ksh 50. Back in the Mid 1990s, Gor Mahia introduced ball point pens branded with the phrase “I support Gor Mahia”. Some of the vendors outside the stadium brazenly sold them for twice the proposed price.

And as mentioned before, if this project is succesful, there could be room for other projects including milk, soda or maize flour. Soon a person could stock his kitchen with Gor Mahia branded products.

Mike Olunga working on sharpening his boots

Newly signed Gor Mahia striker Mike Olunga is working on sharpening his finishing in front of goal. Olunga has been faulted for missing several chances. Lack of composure in front of goal may be a factor.

“Of course playing for a big team like Gor comes with its pressure, but I have managed to weather that pressure, now I need to work on my scoring touch,” said Olunga to supersport.com

He is currently the third leading scorer behind Ali Abondo who has scored 10 and Kagere who has found the back of the net four times. His best match was the season opener against Mathare where he scored twice.

“I have so far scored three, I know I could have scored more if I took the chances I have had, but as I said I am working on my final touch and I know I can only get better,” he added.

But Olunga is not just obsessed with scoring. Being a team player and playing according to the instructions of the technical bench is more important.

“My job is also to assist my team mates. I will be happy if I assist my team mates and eventually win the league, than become the top scorer and lose out on the league title.

Indeed Olunga has played well so far. He is a headache for defenders and they often have no choice but to drag him down resulting in free-kicks or penalties.

Olunga scored 9 goals while playing for Thika United last season and fancied himself scoring more this year.

“I always thrive under pressure and in my opinion, Gor will help me shine. I am sure if I was here last season and scored 10 goals, I would have been a regular in the national team,” said Olunga. I believe in myself, I believe I can do well and I will score many goals. Their playing style suits mine and I look forward to a great season. I am not putting myself under pressure to replace Danny (Sserunkuma) but I will do my best,” said Olunga in January.

The towering Olunga is one of the tallest players ever to play for Gor Mahia. Perhaps the tallest. He can be very useful in corner kicks, throw ins, dead ball situations. Coach Nuttall should work with him on this aspect of his game and perhaps even invite legend Peter Dawo to offer Olunga tips.

Once Olunga sharpens his aerial skills, coach Nuttall should work with wingers and full backs to deliver precise crosses that target Olunga when possible.

At age 21, Olunga still has plenty of opportunity to sharpen his skills if he chooses to work on his game. He can go places.

Olunga left out of U23 qualifiers

Gor Mahia striker Michael Olunga will not be in the traveling squad as the Kenya U23 team travel to Botswana for the opening round of the 2016 Olympic qualifiers.

The Kenya Under-23 team departs for Lobatse via Gaborone this evening ahead of tomorrow’s preliminary, first leg clash at the Lobatse Sports Complex. Team Kenya is coached by former Gor Mahia coach Bobby Williamson.

Olunga, who studies Geospatial Engineering at the Technical University of Kenya,has been excused from the match this weekend, due to end of semester exams.

As for Gor Mahia fans, they will likely not be dissapointed that Olunga will not travel to Botswana.Staying in Kenya will leave him more rested for Gor Mahia’s next match.

The last time the Kenya U23 side competed was against Egypt when Kenya lost 4-1 on aggregate. Two Gor Mahia players, Olunga and Timothy Otieno played in the return leg at Machakos.  Olunga proved a handful for the Egyptians. Kenya’s goal which came from a penalty was scored as a result of Olunga being brought down in the penalty box.

In Olunga’s absence, coach Williamson will depend on Enock Agwanda whose form of late has been below expectations especially for a player who 3 years ago was touted as the next Dennis Oliech.

Coach Williamson for his part has yet to impress as Harambee stars coach and will be hard pressed to conjure up a result.

“To be honest we never played that badly against Egypt. The lessons learnt from those games is that it is important to get something in the away matches. Our recent friendly fixtures in Seychelles will be key” Williamson told Daily Nation Sport.

Of late, Kenya’s record against teams from southern Africa has not been stellar. Last year it was Lesotho who eliminated Kenya from the AFCON 2014 qualifiers and in 2013, Botswana beat Kenya 2-1 in the COSAFA cup.

Gor Mahia bread officially launched

The much vaunted Gor Mahia bread has finally been launched. ODM leader Raila Odinga officially launched the bread in Kisumu City.
“As you know Gor Mahia have had no sponsors and I was in India to talk to the India Chamber of Commerce and Industry, they wanted to know where they can invest and help provide jobs to our youths,” said Raila Odinga. “I met there my friend Srinivasa Reddy of Good Bread Kenya and they showed their interest to partner with Gor Mahia and that is why we are here today to launch Gor Mahia Bread.”said Raila to the Standard.

Raila, who was in India last month, said after meeting Indian Businessmen, he pitched for them to help the club and he was happy to have secured one immediately.

Raila stated that he also wants AFC Leopards to get stronger in order to strengthen Kenya football.

“I also want AFC leopards to get stronger so that we can have a quality league. I believe we have talent in our country that can equal that of Messi, Ronaldo or Sanchez. We should help get these players out and provide them the platform to showcase their talent. “But lack of sponsorship has forced us to think outside the box and we want our players be paid well just like their friends in Europe,” said Raila.

Mr. Reddy said their company, which operates in the Nyanza, Western and Rift Valley regions, will start producing Gor Mahia Bread and urged fans to embrace it. He urged fans to support the initiative.

“Please the more you buy it the better for your club. We intend to sell over 140,000 breads daily. That in a month will translate to over Sh4 million that will go towards the club. “We want to do business and you will help us get this amount to the club,” he said.

Gor Mahia Vice Chairman John Pesa said Nairobi area will also be incorporated soon to help widen the market scope, targeting areas where the clubs fan base is. “We expect the figures to increase depending on the market response. We have 27 players and we are struggling to pay their salaries and allowances,” said Pesa.

For Gor Mahia fans, this is yet another opportunity to support the club. This is especially true for those fans who for whatever reason cannot make it to the stadium.

If this initiative is succesful, there will be other companies that will come forward to do business with Gor Mahia. If the project fails to reach its target, Mr. Reddy and his group will promptly pull the plug.

Let the club handle the issue of officiating

Gor Mahia have raised the red flag with regard to poor officiating in the Kenya premier league. Club official Ronald Ngala says there is too much poor officiating and nothing is being done about it.

“This issue of poor officiating is becoming too much now and it is being caused by unqualified referees. Every time we complain no one lends an ear to our complains,” Ngala told goal.com on Monday.

Ngala also took issue with the fact that four out of seven of the club’s matches have been officiated by one referee.

“We also take issue with the fact that in our seven matches, four of them have been handled by one referee. This clearly shows that there is a big problem.”

An FKF official confirmed that they have indeed received complaints from several clubs.

We have received a letter from Tusker and understand that several clubs are not happy with officiating in Kenyan Premier League.

“One thing is for sure; all referees in KPL are not qualified because they are either retired or those who have not undergone PET test. We will have to look at the issue if we get more clubs complaining to us.”

The official further went on to say that another test will not be conducted until June.

The League’s reputation is at stake

According to the Daily Nation,none of the 16 centre referees, 24 assistant referees and 16 match commissioners drafted to officiate in this season’s league matches are accredited by Fifa.

In contrast, Kenyan referees who are sanctioned by Fifa continue presiding over matches in the Football Kenya Federation Premier League.

The head of FKF’s Technical Committee, Elly Mukolwe, on Monday confirmed that none of the match officials under the KPL roster has undergone the mandatory tests required of top flight league referees, which is a violation of the Fifa statutes.

“They know the truth. I can say without fear that many of those referees have been brought back from retirement. Some failed even the local Member Association fitness test,” he said.

Both Gor Mahia and Sofapaka had reason to be disgruntled.

Poor officiating is a stain on the league’s reputation. If the league is perceived as poorly officiated, the resultant public relations stain can affect public interest, sponsorships and attendance. But even more importantly, the league aficionados should understand that football is an emotional sport and poor officiating can lead to crowd trouble. And this is not unique to Kenya.

And the club officials are best placed to handle this issue. Ambrose Rachier is after all the current KPL chairman. Officials of all clubs have a direct say in how KPL is run and can petition FKF for better referees.

But the club’s reputation is also at stake

It appears that many fans have still not learned from the travails that the club has gone through over the past year. Club officials have gone from one corporate to another seeking sponsorship to no avail. One of the key reasons the club cannot garner sponsorship is precisely due to crowd trouble both inside and outside the stadium.

What is worse is that this time, the people who tossed foreign objects into the field were fans in the main stand and not fans in Russia. You would typically not expect this kind of behaviour from fans who sit at the main stand. These are the fans who should understand the club’s precarious situation.

There are literally hundreds or thousands of the club’s enemies who cannot wait for slightest sign of crowd trouble to flock to social media to besmirch the club. Some of this politically and/or tribally motivated. These kind of people were actually disappointed when the recent mashemeji derby came and went without incident.

The fact that Mathare United recently penned a ksh 75 million sponsorship deal despite not having a fan base and despite not having the history or pedigree of Gor Mahia should have made it obvious to fans now. Mathare got the sponsorship with very little effort because they have an excellent reputation. Media reports suggest that it was Britam who came seeking a partner. Under normal circumstances, companies would be lining up to sponsor Gor Mahia.

Aside from sponsorship, the club could face the real prospect of being punished by losing point or having to play in an empty stadium, something that the club cannot currently afford. There is also the possibility of sanctions from CAF or FIFA.

It is understandable that fans would be unhappy with poor refereeing. Football is after all a sport that can engender all kinds of emotions. But given the club’s current situation, fans ought to know better.