1. George Odhiambo “Taffarel: A solid goalkeeper who would often step forward to take penalties. 2. Francis Akango “Jakambare”: A solid no nonsense fullback 3. Chris Wekesa: A burly fullback whose solid play in 2008 and 2009 saw him called to the national team 4. Eric Masika “PPO”: The youthful Masika was a crowd favourite in 2009 5. Julius Owino “Awilo”: A natural leader who captained club and country 6. Andrew Oyombe: Effectively shielded the defence and featured prominently for the national team and also played in Europe 7. Kenneth Omondi: Was voted Transparency cup MVP in 2005 8. Zablon Otieno “Pro”: Skillful left footed midfielder who was a brilliant playmaker. 9. Emmanuel Wakata: A free scoring attacker who later played in Rwanda 10 George Odhiambo “Blackberry”: His best years were between 2008 and 2010 when he was league MVP 11. Habil Otieno: An effective goal poacher who scored often from half chances.
Patrick Oyiengo “Adesh”,
Jimmy Bagaye, Robert Oluoko, Charles Odipo, Dan Onyango, Tony Onyango, Andrew Ongwae, Tom Odundo, Charles Ojwang, Nathan Munai, Steve Biko, Sylvanus Onyango, Bramwel Karamoja, Ibrahim Kitawi, Duncan Owiti “Macheda”, Stephen Ochola, Elisha Ochieno “Achach”, John Kiplagat
Victor Onyango: A brilliant goalkeeper yet full of drama Zedekiah Otieno: Overlapping right back who starred for both club and country and was coach of both club and country Tiellen Oguta: An uncompromising full back who went on to play in Europe Josiah Ougo: A composed yet solid central defender Sammy Omollo “Pamzo”: One of the best defensive stoppers this country has seen Tom Juma: A tireless box to box midfielder Allan Odhiambo: A towering defensive midfielder who often scored as many goals as the strikers. In the 1991 league campaign, he was the club’s leading scorer. Dan Ogada: An engine that was able to drive the team forward, create chances, deliver brilliangt through balls and with supreme ball control John Odhiambo “Baresi”: A highly capable dribbler, remembered for outplaying the Super Eagles in that epic encounter in 1997 Steve Okumu: A reliable goalscorer who used his quick first step to evade defenders. Steve Odiaga: A powerful and towering attacker
Joseph Asembo: A towering goalkeeper, very good with high balls Paul Ochieng: Burly defender who intimidated strikers with his size Bonaventure Maruti: A speedy attacker who scored freely. Went on to play for many years in Europe. Charles Oduor: A reliable fullback Mike Otieno: An explosive left winger with incredible acceleration. He later became the team’s coach.
Stephen Kinuthia “Kenos”, Charles Oduor “Fundi”, Albert Njeru, William Odidi, Joseph Akinga, Frazier Ochieng, Tom Ochieng “Malindi”, Tom Okaya, Brian Okumu, Bramwell Mwololo, George Owalla, George Sunguti, Joseph Owino Andai “Conte”, George Sunguti, Dan Shikanda, Tom Odhiambo, Charles Omondi “Korea”, Felix Otieno, Jared Ochieng Achieng, Hezron Omondi “Othuks”, Joseph Akinga, Zelleallem Teshome, Pius Wamaya, Michael Kisaghi, Eric Obura, Aggrey Obonyo, David Odhiambo “Deo”
1. David Ochieng: Solid no drama keeper who starred for both club and country. 2. Tobias Ocholla: Reliable and created several goals with his long throw ins 3. Peter Otieno “Bassanga”: Industrious left back 4. Bobby Ogolla: The best defensive stopper this country has ever seen 5. Austin Oduor: The most succesful team captain in Kenya’s history 6. Charles Otieno: The Engine of the team 7. Abbas Magongo: Tireless, skillful and covered every inch of the field 8. Sammy Owino: Immensely talented midfielder who scored brilliant inidvidual goals 9. George Onyango: Schemer par supreme 10. Peter Dawo: Known for his goal-scoring spree in 1987. Was voted Among Africa’s 10 best players in 1987 11. Nahashon Oluoch: Brilliant dribbler who also scored superb individual goals. Also voted among Africa’s 10 best
Tirus Omondi: An acrobatic goalkeeper and full of drama Swaleh Ochieng: Powerfully built left back who shut down opposing players with robust tackles John Okello Zangi: Enigmatic, tireless, and very dexterious on the ball Sammy Onyango: Superb crosser, corner taker and penalty taker. Two footed Hezborn Omollo: Scored over 50 league goals between 1983 and 1985
George Odembo “Nyangi”, George Otieno “Vigo”, George Otieno “Solo”, Isaiah Omondi “Janabi”, Ben Oloo “Breakdance”, Gideon Hamisi “Aziki”, Enock Obwaka, Hamisi Shamba, Abdallah Shebe, William Obwaka, Goro Oronge, Jaffar Mwidau, Ignatius Khaduli, Hezron Osuka, John Chore, Anthony Ndolo, Mike Adede, Abbey Nassur, Peter Ochieng “Pierre”,
1. Dan Odhiambo: Had the sharpest reflexes of any Kenyan goalkeeper 2. Paul Oduwo “Cobra”: Tirelessly ran up and down the right flank. Kept defenders at bay with robust tackles 3. Festus Nyakota: A solid no-nonsense fullback 4. James Ogolla “Kadir”: Versatile defender who played in central defence and on the flanks 5. Mike Ogolla “Machine”: Nicknamed Machined because he dealt easily with opposing attacks 6. Jerry Imbo: Very talented midfielder who made everything look easy 7. George “Best” Yoga: Still one of the top 5 scorers in the history of the club 8. Steve “McQueen” Yongo: Played superbly in defense midfield and attack. Starred at the 1972 AFCON 9. William Ouma “Chege”: The best striker Kenya produced before Dennis Oliech 10. Allan Thigo: The high priest of Gor Mahia football. The best ever playmaker Kenya has produced 11. Peter Ouma “Pele” : Efficient scorer who also scored for Kenya at the 1972 AFCON
James Sianga: Take no prisoners goalkeeper who later became a succesful coach Nicodemus Arudhi: Efficient Inside right who scored often and later became infamous Tim Ayieko: Ugandan with kenyan roots who starred for the Uganda Cranes Maurice Ochieng: Led the league in scoring in 1976 Andrew Obunga: Explosive centre forward
Ben Oballa, Masanta Osoro, Chris Obure, Jaoko Orifwa, Jackson Aluko, Samson Odore, Duncan Migan, Fred Siranga, George Ayuka, Charles Ondiek “Racham”, Sospeter Otin, Walter Molo, Maurice Ole Tunda, Francis Midany “Power”, Josphat Okello “Smart”, Amos Nandy, Sammy Ndonga, Simon Nyatome, Festus Nyakota, Tom Oyake, Owen Nandi, Paul Odhiambo, Laban Otieno
As the decade comes to an end, lets take a look back at the players who made the most impact to the team during the decade of 2010 to 2019.
Goalkeeper: Jerim Onyango
Jerim joined Kogalo in 2009 from KRA. He was team captain for three years. A natural team leader who inspired the playing unit through words and by leading through example. He was the best goalkeeper in the country in 2013. The moment of his career came when Gor Mahia played away to US Bitam of Gabon. On that day he saved three penalties to steer Gor Mahia to the next round.
Right Back: Karim Nizigiyimana
He joined Gor Mahia in 2015 and played for three years. During this period he was a solid defender and provided an extra dimension when going forward with his precise crosses. In 2016 he was voted the defender of the year and he led the league in assists
Left Back : Godfrey Walusimbi
A solid left back who was also very useful when going forward. Comfortable at either full back or in midfield. Very well poised and controlled on the ball. He joined Gor Mahia in 2013 and stayed on for four years.
Centre Back: David Owino Calabar
When he joined from Nakuru All Stars in 2012, the then coach Zdravko Logarusic was not too impressed. The Croatian coach preferred towering centre backs like Emuge and Mosoti. But Calabar being adaptable, earned his way into the starting line-up by playing at either full back position. When Bobby Williamson became coach in 2014, Calabar cemented his place at centre back but occassionally played at full back. He earned his nickname because of the man of the match performance against Nigeria in Calabar when Kenya held Nigeria 1-1.
Centre Back: Harun Shakava
He joined Gor Mahia from Kakamega Homeboyz. A towering no-nonsense defender who solidified the centre back position and eventually became team captain in 2017
Defensive Midfielder: Godfrey Baba Kizito
A consumate midfielder who combined a strong defensive presence with superb passing and playmaking skills which he used to rapidly switch from defence to offence. He played for Kogalo in 2014, helping the club win its second successive title.
Right Midfield: Moses Odhiambo Dube
An intelligent player who always made the correct decision on the field and always made the right pass leading to several crucial goals. Before joining Gor Mahia, he had played in Rwanda and Tanzania. His experience and leadership came in handy.
Left Midfield: Francis Kahata
He is the best playmaker the club fielded in this decade. Very good at linking play. Superior vision. And precise accuracy in the delivery of his passes. Led the team in assists in all the seasons he played.
Attacking midfield: Rama Salim
Rama could play in any attacking position. His combination and understanding with Dan Sserunkuma is among the best the club has ever seen.
Striker: Jacque Tuyisenge
He gets the nod over Olunga and Kagere for the simple reason that his impact at the club was larger. He played for far more seasons and left as one of the top 5 scorers in the history of the club. He was instrumental in three league titles.
Striker Dan Sserunkuma
In 2013, the club had not won a league title for 18 seasons. Twice in the previous four years, the club had lost the league on the last day. In 2013 , Sserunkuma went on a scoring tear that helped secure the first league title since 1995. Most memorable was his goal against Sofapaka that secured the league by eliminating Sofapaka from contention. Most notable was that he almost always scored in the Mashemeji derby.
With the CAF Champions League match against Aigle Noire approaching, it is worth taking a trip down memory lane to recall the last time Kogalo played a Burundian side. But 1983 was such an eventful year that it is worth remembering the peaks and valleys that beset Gor Mahia in that epic year.
Jacque Tuyisenege is leaving Kogalo after an illustrious career at the club. Since joining the club in 2016he has proven to be a reliable scorer. He joined the club at a time when fans were concerned about the club’a attack given the departure of Michael Olunga and Meddie Kagere.
After an injury riddled start that left many fans wondering why he was signed without a medical test, Tuyisenge finally hit his stride and went ona goal scoring spree that ended with him being the 4th leading scorer in the 2017 KPL.
One area where Tuyisenge excelled was in the aerial division where his ability to accurately direct powerful headers resulted in numerous crucial goals. As Tuyisenege leaves, let us recall some of the best heading specialists this club has seen.
When it comes to scoring with headers Peter Dawo is second to none. Not just in Kenya but one can safeky make the claim that no African striker has ever scored so prolifically from headers.
His name is synonymous with Gor Mahia’s only continental trophy in 1987. This is because he scored 10 goals to emerge as the top scorer in the tournament. 9 of the goals were from headers. The most memorable came in the semi finals when with Gor Mahia staring at elimination with only a few minutes left, he scored with a powerful back header. Just as crucial was the header he scored against Esperance when he headed home a precise corner kick from Abbas Magongo after lulling the Esperance defence to sleep by pretending to tie his shoelaces.
Dawo also scored numerous crucial league goals such as the 1987 Mashemeji derby. In a tense match at a packed Nyayo stadium,the game appeared headed for a scoreless draw when Dawo rose to head home a cross from Ben Oloo “Breakdance” and in the process sent fans into a near delirium.
Dawo was the kind of striker who created utter chaos and bedlam against any defence because of his hyper-activity in the goal area and his amazing leaping ability.
The towering Allan Odhiambo was a product of Eastleigh secondary school at a time when they were the best school team in Nairobi, winning the city title in 1988 and 1989. Odhiambo first came to prominence in 1990 as a central defender of the Kenya U21 team coached by Gerry Saurer, a coach who excellent at identifying and unearthing talents. That was the best U21 team ever in Kenya’s history as nearly half of them played for the Kenya national team in later years.
Odhiambo, barely in his twenties in 1991, ended up as the leading scorer for Gor Mahia in 1991 with 12 goals. It was quite an achievement considering that he mostly played in central defence or as a defensive midfielder, a position that coach Len Julians deployed him to take advantage of his scoring . He scored in both legs of the mashemeji derby in 1991.
George Otieno “Vigo”
A powerfully built defensive stopper, Vigo was sometimes preferred in that position by coach Len Julians because unlike other defenders of that era, Vigo was good on the ball and was able to initiate moves from the defensive area.
And when Kogalo was awarded a corner kick, you could count on Sammy Onyango sending an accurate delivery exactly where Vigo anticipated the ball and Vigo would not dissapoint. He scored numerous goals from heading home corner kicks in the 1982, 83 and 84 seasons. Thsi despite playing sparingly.
His most memorable goal remains the goal he scored against English premier league side Everton in Dar es Salaam. On that occassion, Muguna took the corner to the near post and Tuyisenge, anticipating where the ball was going, left the Everton defenders flat footed and powered the ball home from a very difficult angle.
The goal was epic because it was against a premier league side and it was less than a minute after legendary Wayne Rooney had opened the scoring.
Tuyisenge would go on to score numerous other goals from the air. But also on the ground. A feat that enabled him to become the fourth leading scorer in the history of the league. Only Sammy Onyango, Hezborn Omollo, Allan Thigo and Peter Dawo have scored more goals for Kogalo.
Tuyisenge was also a humble person, a class act, a committed professional. Despite his stature, he was not one of those who was always agitating to move overseas for a better deal.
On behalf of GORMAHIA.NET and Gor Mahia online supporters club, Thank you Tuyisenge for three exceptional seasons at Gor Mahia. You will be remembered.
The 2018 season will be remembered as the year when Gor Mahia wrapped up the league title with more than 10 matches to go. The club played well in continental and regional events only to stagger at crucial stages.
Nevertheless, Kogalo can walk away proud. Aside from winning the league by 13 points, they also won the Sportpesa Super cup, beating Simba of Dar es Salaam 2-0 in the final. And also won the domestic super cup, beating AFC Leopards.
New Signings and Transfers
Gor Mahia signed Charles Momanyi, Ivorian Ephraim Guikan, Wesley Onguso, Samuel Onyango, and Lawrence Juma
joining was Humphrey Mieno whom Kogalo had tried to sign in the
previous year from Tusker as well as Kevin Omondi who had starred for
Meanwhile Gor Mahia lost veteran defender Musa Mohamed as well as creative Midfielder Kenneth Muguna, both of whom joined former club coach Ze Maria in Albania
Gor Mahia were eligible to play in the Super cup, having won the league in 2017. They faced off against arch-rivals AFC Leopards who had won the FKF cup in 2017.
The match was played at Afraha stadium with no stadium being available in Nairobi. Gor Mahia won 1-0 with Harun Shakava scoring the all important goal in the 40th minute.
“I am happy with the result. Shakava made the difference and I am proud
of the team. They did us proud,” said Gor Mahia coach Dylan Kerr.
Champions League preliminary round
Gor Mahia were pitted against Leones Vegeterianos of Equatorial Guinea in the prelimianry round. The first leg was played in Machakos since no international calibre stadium in Nairobi was available. All three were under construction.
Gor Mahia went on to win the first leg 2-0. Kevin Omondi scored the first goal. Ephrem Guikan scored the second with his very first touch of the ball after coming on as a substitute. Humphrey Mieno missed a penalty that could have made it 3-0.
In the return leg, the Equatoguineans took the lead in the 55th minute and pressed for another goal to force penalties. Gor Mahia fought back and scored when a Leones defender deflected a Francis Kahata corner into his own net. Gor Mahia scored again in injury time but the goal was disallowed. The game ended 1-1 and Gor Mahia qualified for the next round.
Champions League First Round
In the first round, Gor Mahia were pitted against Esperance, a team that four years earlier had outclassed them and eliminated them by a aggregate score of 8-2.
In the first leg at Machakos stadium, Gor Mahia acquitted themselves well, dominating possession especially in the first half. The second half was more balanced. The game ended 0-0.
In the second leg in Tunis, Gor Mahia acquited themselves really well, defending solidly and recording several shots on goal. It took a defensive blunder to gift Esperance a 1-0 win.
Esperance fans, unhappy with Gor Mahia’s solid performance, threw foreign objects at Gor Mahia players after the match.
Esperance went on to win the 2018 champions league. Therefore narrowly losing to the eventual champions showed Gor Mahia’s mettle.
CAF Confederations cup playoff
Having been eliminated from the Champions League, Gor Mahia faced off against Supersport of South Africa for a chance to go to the group stage of the CAF Confederations cup.
The first leg was played at Machakos. Gor Mahia won 1-0 thanks to a penalty slotted home by Jacque Tuyisenge. The penalty occured after a Meddie Kagere header was handled by a Supersport defender.
The second leg almost proved to be a quagmire. Only days before the match was to be played, Gor Mahia announced that they did not have the wherewithal to secure airline tickets. Worse still they had not secured travel visas It took the financial intervention of Nairobi mayor Mbuvi “Sonko” to secure tickets and the intervention of Foreign affairs cabinet secretary Ababu Namwamba to secure visas. However two key players Jacque Tuyisenge and Ephrem Guikan did not get their visas and were unable to travel to South Africa.
The return leg in Pretoria was played to an almost empty stadium. The South African side went ahead in the 58th minute from a Haron Shakava own goal. Francis Kahata equalized less than a minute later, converting a cross from George Odhiambo. Supersport would score again in the 68th minute. Gor Mahia had to hang on grimly for the last 22 minutes plus added time. The 1-2 loss enabled Gor Mahia to qualify for the group stage on away goals rule.
International Friendly: Gor Mahia vs Hull City
Gor Mahia had earned the right to play Hull City after winning the Hull City challenege cup against AFC Leopards at Afraha. That match ended 0-0 and Gor Mahia won 5-4 on penalties
The match against Hull City was played to a capacity crowd, the likes of which had not been seen in Kenya for decades.
Gor Mahia played well but could not score. The game ended 0-0 and went straight to penalties. It looked like Gor Mahia were going to win the penalty shootout when goalkeeper Boniface Oluoch saved two penalties.
CAF Confederations cup group stage
Gor Mahia started their group stage campaign on a positive note. They forced a 1-1 draw away to Rayon Sports. Meddie Kagere scored the opener before the Rwandese side equalized from a free-kick. A large crowd of Gor Mahia fans traveled all the way to Rwanda. Gor Mahia were the better side but were unable to make their dominance pay. Nevertheless the away draw boded well for Gor Mahia’s chanced of advancing to the next stage.
In the second match, Gor Mahia held USM Alger of Algeria 0-0 at the newly refurbished Kasarani sports centre. Gor Mahia had to play most of the second half with 10 men after Joash Onyango was sent off in the 55th minute.
In the third Match, Gor mahia recorded their first win, beating Yanga of Tanzania 4-0. Ephrem Guikan scored twice. The other goals came from Tuyisenge and an own goal.
When Gor Mahia beat Yanga 3-2 in the 4th match in Dar es Salaam, it seemed Gor Mahia were on their way to the quarter-finals. The goals came from Tuyisenge, Blackberry and Shakava.
Yet again Gor Mahia fans traveled in large number to Dar es Salaam
The month of August was a nighmare scenario. They were required to play 10 matches in 29 days. This after having already played in the CECAFA club cup and the Sportpesa shield. In addition, the club lost key players Godfrey Walusimbi and Meddie Kagere to foreign sides.
The two factors took a toll on Gor Mahia as they went down 1-2 to Rayon Sports of Rwanda at Kasarani. Francis Mustafa scored Gor Mahia’s goal.
Gor Mahia needed at least a draw against USM Alger in their last match. But they could not overcome the fatigue, finding themselves 2-0 down before Jacque Tuyisenge scored a late consolation. The match ended 2-1 and Gor Mahia narrowly missed out on the quarter-finals.
2018 Premier League
The first match of the 2018 Premier League was a clear indicator of the extent to which Gor Mahia would dominate the league in 2018. In the league opener, Gor Mahia destroyed Nakumatt 4-0. Meddie Kagere too showed his intentions, scoring a hat-trick with Wellington Ochieng sealing the score.
Gor Mahia would have won the league unbeaten but the marathon August schedule where they played 10 matches in 29 days after having already played in the CECAFA cup and the Sportpesa Super cup, put paid to those aspirations.
By August Gor Mahia had opened up such a wide lead that it was not a matter of if but when they would win the league. Despite playing 10 matches in 29 days, Gor Mahia clinched the league in grand style, beating Sofapaka 3-0 then beating arch rivals AFC leopards 2-0 within a few days. Boniface Omondi and Bernard Ondiek scored the goals.
In the end Gor Mahia garnered 75 points, which is 13 points ahead of the second team (Bandari). They would have garnered more points but they took their foot off the accelerator pedal after clinching the league and went on to lose four matches. Gor Mahia also scored an impressive 71 goals, which was a massive 23 goals higher than the second best team in that regard.
2018 Sportpesa Super Cup
The 2018 Sportpesa Supercup was used to determine who would play Everton at Goodison Park. It featured Four teams from Kenya(Gor Mahia, AFC Leopards, Kakamega Homeboyz, Kariobangi Sharks) and four teams from Tanzania (Yanga, Simba, Jeshi La Kujenga Uchumi and Singida United).
Gor Mahia started solidly, beating Jeshi 3-0 with goals from George Odhiambo, Godfrey Walusimbi and Meddie Kagere. They then beat Singida United 2-0 thanks to a brace from Meddie Kagere. In the final, Gor Mahia blanked Simba of Dar es Salaam 2-0 with goals from Kagere and Tuyisenge.
All in all , a solid performance from Kogalo in which they scored 7 goals and conceded none.
2018 Sportpesa Shield
The Sportpesa Shield was the 2018 edition of Kenya’s domestic cup to determine who would represent Kenya in the 2018-2019 CAF Confederations cup.
Gor Mahia started off against SS Asad whom they dismissed 5-1 with goals from Lawrence Juma(2), Innocent Wafula, Jacque Tuyisenge and Eliud Lokuwam.
In the round of 32 match, Gor Mahia trounced Kenpoly 5-0. Ivorian Ephrem Guikan notched a hat-trick. Lawrence Juma added another and Kenpoly scored an own goal.
In the round of 16, Gor Mahia faced their first top tier opposition: Posta Rangers. They went on to win 3-1 with a brace from Kevin Omondi and another by Samuel Onyango.
Gor Mahia played against Kariobangi Sharks in the quarter-finals. The match was played soon after Gor Mahia had returned from Algeria where they played USM Alger. Kariobangi won 4-2 on penalties.
Coach Dylan Kerr suggested that FKF Chair Nick Mwendwa, who also owns Kariobangi Sharks, deliberately scheduled the match to coincide with Gor Mahia’s return from Algeria to take advantage of Gor Mahia’s travel fatigue.
“Congratulations to Sharks they were the better side today I can,
however bad we played be so proud how they gave everything even though
it wasn’t the best today. Thank you to the K’Ogalo family who supported
us today pole that we lost. FKF president new what he was doing” said Kerr in a tweet.
2018 CECAFA Club Cup
Gor Mahia added the 2018 CECAFA club cup to their busy schedule. Many fans felt that the club should skip it given that they were playing an inordinately large number of matches.
Gor Mahia had to play without leading scorer Meddie Kagere who departed to Tanzania to play for Simba.
They started off with a 2-2 draw against Rayon Sports. It was dissapointing as Gor Mahia were leading 2-0 at halftime with goals from Mieno and Tuyisenge.
In the second match, Gor Mahia twice came from behind to hold LLB Aacademic of Burundi 2-2. Philemon Otieno scored first then Jacque Tuyisenge scored an injury time goal to grab a point.
In the third group match, Gor Mahia dismissed AS Port of Djibouti 2-0 with goals from Charles Momanyi and Ephrem Guikan.
Gor Mahia’s best match of the tournament came in the quarter-finals. here they came from behind to beat Ugandan champions, Vipers 2-1. Francis Mustafa score his first ever goal for Gor Mahia when he scored from a rebound. Jacque Tuyisenge scored the winner.
In the semis, Gor Mahia lost to Tanzanian moneybags Azam by a score of 2-0. It was the same side that beat Gor Mahia in the 2015 final.
Coach Dylan Kerr cited fatigue as the reason for the loss.
2018 will also be remembered as yet another year when late payments of player salaries were commonplace within the club. Players went on strike and engaged in go-slows on numerous occassions to protest non-payment of their dues. In March for example, it was reported that Gor Mahia players had not been paid for two months.
Matters came to a head again in September when fans came to the rescue of skipper Harun Shakava who was about to be evicted by his landlord due to non-payment of rent. He and other players had not been payed for months.
International Friendly: Gor Mahia vs Everton
It was another first for Gor Mahia as they became the first team from the CECAFA region to play an English Premiership side in the UK.
Unlike the first encounter against Everton, this time Gor Mahia was fielding a much weaker side having lost several key players. They were also playing an Everton side that was sharp as they were already in mid season, whereas this was the off season for Gor Mahia.
The gap in class was evident as Everton stunned Gor Mahia with quick and precise passes that left Gor Mahia players flat footed. In the end Gor Mahia went down 4-0
Following the loss to Everton, Gor Mahia fans were stunned further when popular head coach Dylan Kerr announced that he was leaving. Kerr had no contract at Gor Mahia. Fans were hit hard as Kerr was very popular and had steered the club to two league title and numerous important wins.
Gor Mahia face an uphill battle as they take on Nigerian League Leaders Lobi Stars on December 14. Its a similar situation to 38 years ago, the last time Kogalo faced a Nigerian team. This is the only time Gor Mahia has ever played a Nigerian side. It was in the second round of the 1980 Africa cup of champions, the predecessor of today’s Africa champions league. The team they faced was the then Nigerian champions, Bendel Insurance.
Gor Mahia has not had much of a history playing against Malawian sides. However on the few occasions that they have faced Malawian sides, Gor Mahia has most often emerged triumphant. However Malawian sides have always proven very difficult to beat.
The first encounter pitting Gor Mahia against a Malawian side was in 1977 in the Africa Champions cup. On that occassion, they were pitted against Yamaha Wanderers. Gor Mahia lost the first leg 1-2 in Nairobi. Andrew Obunga scored Gor Mahia’s lone goal. Just when everyone had written them off, they shocked the Malawians, winning 2-1 in the return leg in Blantyre. The legendary Allan Thigo scored twice. Gor Mahia went on to win 5-3 on penalties and advanced to the next round.
The next encounter against a Malawian side was in 1980 in the CECAFA club cup which was held in Malawi. They met the hosts Limbe Leaf Wanderers in the semi-final. The confident Malawian side had topped group A whereas Gor Mahia scraped through the group stage, finishing second with only three points. The match ended 1-1 in regulation time. Experienced midfielder Tim Ayieko scored for Kogalo. The match went to penalties where Gor Mahia triumphed again winning 3-1.
The 1982 CECAFA club cup was held in Kenya. Gor Mahia were in group B which was based in Kisumu. In the first round, they came up against Malawi side Bata Bullets. It was yet another tense encounter which ended 1-1 with Ugandan winger Abbey Nassur scoring for Kogalo. Despite the partisan home support in Kisumu, Gor Mahia could not pull off a victory.
The 1984 CECAFA club cup was also held in Kenya. This time Gor Mahia comfortably topped group A. In the semis, they came up against yet another tough Malawian side known as Berec Power Pack. The latter had beaten arch rivals AFC Leopards 1-0 in the last group B match. The match took place at the newly constructed Nyayo national stadium. Gor Mahia won the tense encounter 1-0 thanks to an own goal and moved on the final.
The best performance for Gor Mahia against a Malawian side came in 1985 at the CECAFA club cup in Sudan. Gor Mahia, without six key players who were suspended by both CAF and CECAFA, met Limbe Leaf Wanderers again. Fielding a team comprised largely of new signings, Gor Mahia won 3-0. All the goals were scored by new signings with Goro Oronge striking twice while recent Kakamega high school leaver George Nyangi Odembo scored the other.
With Malawi having withdrawn from CECAFA competitions starting in the late 1980s, encounters between Kogalo and Malawian sides have not occurred.
Gor Mahia players have starred in the national team against Malawi
Encounters between the the Kenya national team, Harambee stars and the Malawi national team, the flames have been more common, with the Malawians proving more succesful. On the occassions when Kenya has beaten the Malawians, it has often been Gor Mahia players who have proven decisive.
The most epic encounter between Kenya and Malawi occurred in 1987. It was during the semi-finals of the 4th All African games. The match was full of intrigue. It was originally scheduled for a day earlier. As that match started, Malawi were clearly dominant against a Kenyan side that seemed tired having only played their last group match the previous day. The light operators at Nyayo stadium switched off the floodlights when it seemed Harambee stars would surely lose.
The match was then replayed the next day. The tense encounter ended tied 1-1 after 120 minutes. In the ensuing penalty shootout, Gor Mahia goalkeeper David Ochieng put on a clinic in penalty saving. He saved no less than three Malawian penalties. All the players who converted for Harambee stars were Gor Mahia players: Sammy Onyango, George Onyango and Austin Oduor. The latter brought the house down when he scored the epic and decisive penalty turning the stadium and the whole country into a near delirium.
Another epic match was during the qualifiers for the 1990 Africa cup of nations. Morale in the Harambee stars camp was low. The players led by captain Austin Oduor refused to train, protesting non-payment of allowances. They vowed not to travel to Lilongwe for the return leg until allowances were settled. A last minute deal was reached and the players traveled. They ended up beating Malawi 3-2 in Lilongwe much to the shock and dismay of the packed stadium and a Malawian side coached by the legendary Clement Malola. The man who destroyed Malawi on that day was Gor Mahia winger Anthony Ndolo who scored a brace. The Malawians had no answer for Ndolo’s pace.
In 1991, the two sides met in the CECAFA senior challenge cup group stage. Kenya won 1-0 with Gor Mahia midfield ace, Allan Odhiambo scoring the decisive goal. That season Allan was Gor Mahia’ stop scorer in the league despite playing as a defensive midfielder.
In their most recent match, Kenya beat Malawi 1-0 in a friendly and it was Gor Mahia ace Francis Kahata who scored the winner.