A video of the penalty shootout at the end of the Gor Mahia vs Nyasa Big Bullets Match. Watch as Boniface Oluoch silences the large crowd.
"Home of the mighty Kogalo...."
Mike Okinyi: Gor Mahia is the first team from Africa to play at Liverpool.
Nizigiyimana: The team is very happy and thanks the sponsor for this glorious opportunity
Shakava: As a team we have trained well for this opportunity. A chance to showcase our talent. The weather is not favourable. We will not put pressure on ourselves. We will just relax and play. We promise the fans that we will enjoy the game and play well.
As Gor Mahia prepare to take on Young Africans of Tanzania in the 2018 CAF Confederations cup, its worth taking a trip down memory lane to witness and recall Gor Mahia’s first ever sojourn into continental football. Their first ever continental opponents was a club known as Burri Khartoum of Sudan.
One player who is easily recognizable is James Sianga who is second in line as the team walks into the field. The players are greeted by The Minister for Cooperatives and Social services, Ronald Ngala. The stadium is packed to the rafters. Many aspects of City stadium have not changed since then. Most notably the residential homes behind the stadium that provide an excellent view into the stadium. And the terraces at Russia have not changed.
Gor Mahia earned the right to play in the 1969 Africa champions cup by virtue of having won the Kenyan league in 1968, the year of formation of the club. Gor Mahia had been formed in 1968, folding Luo Union FC and Luo Sports club and also recruiting numerous players from Kisumu Hotstars.
The local football scene was shambolic in 1969. Minister Ronald Ngala, disbanded the Kenya Football Association and also suspended the national league. Thus Gor Mahia were in danger of lacking match fitness when they played Burri. To mitigate this, they embarked on a countrywide tour to play friendly matches.
But Gor Mahia was also undergoing a civil war with certain members of the club executive committee fighting to take over the club and rename it Luo Union FC.
The opening round of the 1969 Champions cup were played in September. Gor Mahia won the first leg 4-2 in Khartoum. However in the return leg, Gor Mahia played rather poorly, losing 0-1 at City Stadium in front of a large partisan crowd. It marked the first of many instances where Gor Mahia parlayed an excellent away record.
Gor Mahia thus qualified for the next round where they faced off with Ismaily of Egypt. They drew 1-1 at home before losing 1-3 in Cairo. Ismaily went on to win the Africa champions cup in 1969.
Among the players who featured for Gor Mahia in this campaign were James Sianga, John Otieno “Hatari”, Josphat Okello “Smart”, William Ouma “Chege”, Arthur Omondi, Paul Ndula, Samson Odore, Joseph “Mwalimu” Okeyo, Walter Molo, Steve “McQueen” Yongo, Daniel Nicodemus Arudhi, John Wambudo and Chris Obure, the former senator of Kisii county. They were coached by Paul Odhiambo, the first ever coach at the club.
Gor Mahia’s first continental campaign was creditable considering what the club had to overcome which included the lack of a domestic league, infighting within the club an infighting at national level which led to the disbandment of both the KFA and the league.
It is also said that players were significantly affected by the death of Tom Mboya who had been buried in an emotional ceremony only weeks earlier.
Gor Mahia are still training hard and focused on ending the league on a good note and also with a focus towards preparing for next season’s champions league.
Musa Mohamed: I thank God for the title. I thank the players. If is because of their effort throughout the season.
Kagere: It is a great thing to have. It is one of the things every player aims for.
Blackberry: We cannot say this is the last title. We are still focused
Kerr: I have to thank the players for making my dreams a reality. I knew the challenges of taking this job and the expectations of the chairman
Kagere: We hope to make sure we begin new season in good form. We will be playing champions league so we must make sure we are in good form.
Musa: Our main objective is to get good results from the start to the end.
Kerr: Its up to me and my staff to make sure that are prepared for whomever we get in the qualifier and we do our best. At the end of the day, thats all I ask from our players.
Gor Mahia talisman Jacque Tuyisenge and defensive midfielder Ernest Wendo have both put pen to paper on new contracts signing 2 and 3 year contracts respectively.
“It’s my best career moment, I had never won a league title before. I chose to stay on because of the love I have been offered here,” said an elated Tuyisenge to the Nation.
In 2016, Kogalo paid Ksh to Rwanda Police for his services. Since then he has been the leading scorer for the club.
This is good news for Kogalo who need to keep their squad intact if they are to make an impact continentally.
This video was recorded before Tuyisenge and Wendo put pen to paper.
Walusimbi: This time if the office comes on board and performs the required preparations, the team will perform well.
Tuyisenge: We want to reach the group stage of the champions league
Kerr: I am confident that if we have the right players and the right mentality, we shall go far.
Walusimbi on whether he will stay: If the offer is good, maybe I can stay. If I get a better offer elsewhere I might go. But I would like to stay.
Kerr on the players status: I want them all to stay. If you break up the team, you will have to start from fresh which is not healthy
Kogalo legend, All Thigo, arguably the greatest player ever to play for this club, explained that the name Sirkal came about when President Moi decreed that all tribal clubs must change their names to non-tribal names. The only team given an exception by Moi was Gor Mahia. Hence the name “Sirkal”