Gor Mahia fans are the most colourful in kenya and are one of most interesting aspects in the Kenya premier league. So colourful that Kenya tourism officials suggest visiting City Stadium to visiting tourists.
Being passionate about a club is something that most Kenyans cannot relate to. Most Kenyans who like football are pretend football fans following teams like Man U and Chelsea. They therefore cannot relate to the roller coaster what Kogalo and Ingwe fans go through on a weekly basis. The so called premier league fan does not really lose sleep when his team loses a match. Today he ,might support Chelsea and tomorrow he might support Coventry City. These are the kind of fans who will look incredulously at Kogalo fans when fracas ensues, while failing to acknowledge that football fans the world over are the same.
For Gor Mahia fans it is especially a tense time because twice in the last three years, the club has come within a whisker of winning the league only to falter on the last day of the season. The prospect of a repeat in 2013 has left some Kogalo fans on tenterhooks. They simply cannot deal with another disappointment. What this means is that from time to time, the fans might loose their poise
Fans can be a crucial element in the club’s campaign acting as the 12th man. But a tense fan base can also have the opposite effect. This is true all over the world and is not unique to Kogalo fans. In fact players like Okoth “Gattuso” who claim that they cannot play for Gor Mahia because the fans are too demanding, yet aspire to play professional football in Europe are deceiving themselves. If you cannot survive the pressure at Gor Mahia then you do not stand a chance in Europe where the fans are just as passionate but turn out in much larger numbers even in lower leagues like Sweden and Denmark. And these fans will have very little patience for a Kenyan player. The pressure from European fans is immense. A player who can thrive at Kogalo has an excellent chance of succeeding in Europe because they will be used to playing under pressure.
What is needed now from Kogalo fans is for them to offer whole-hearted support to the team. Get behind the players, cheer them and life their spirits even when the team is down. Results will not always be positive but if the fan base stays with the players, and shows patience, results will be better.
Secondly, the fans must control their emotions and avoid putting the club in a position where they might be banned from stadia or even worse loose points. In Awendo last week, it was clear that SoNy players caused the abandonment by assaulting the match officials.
But it must be said that Kogalo fans did not acquit themselves well when they followed SoNy Fans into the pitch. However Kogalo fans collected ample photographic evidence to show that SoNy players did indeed assault the match officials, thus negating the conspiracy by KPL and match officials who tried to claim that neither team caused the bandonment. This is the kind of support the team will need in the last 8 games of the league.
If Zdravko Logarusic was still here today, he would say that in these last 8 games: ” The club now needs fans who can support the team and think at the same time. The fan in the picture below clearly was not doing that.
Aside from calming down on the terraces, fans especially travelling fans should accord themselves peacefully when they are away from the stadium. Scenes such as the the Muthurwa fiasco should be avoided at all costs.
Credit must also go to players like Jerim Onyango above, Moses Odhiambo, Bob Ogolla and previously Logarusic who have taken it upon themselves to calm down the passionate fans. SoNy players could learn something from them.
Let the fans channel their passion towards supporting the team through hell or high water. Through bad games and good games.