12 May 17

Can “Zesh” continue to work his magic?

Gor Mahia have collected six points, scored five goals and conceded none in their last two matches. Will that brilliant run continue? Fans will find out this Saturday as they take on newly promoted Nzoia United.

Having taken over the league lead, coach Ze Maria will want to hold on.

“I am proud of my players’ performance in the last two matches. Those two wins have been very important to us. Now that we are at the top, I am confident we will handle the pressure of being there. We want to remain there until the end of the season,” said Ze Maria to the Standard.

Will fatigue be a factor?

Playing three matches inside 6 days can take its toll on the players. The compressed schedule has been taking its toll on teams this season. Chemelil coach Abdalla Juma blames Wednesday’s loss to Kogalo on fatigue.

“This is a challenge. In fact it is very difficult both for us and for the players. We had a game just two days ago, and today we are playing again, it means that even if I wanted to use a different strategies for today’s match I can’t execute that successfully because of the little time we have I between games,” he said to the Nation.

And this is where coach Ze Maria and to a much larger extent trainer Sandro Fantino will earn their keep. They will need to closely monitor the physical state of each player. He may consider resting a player like Kagere who has already played over 180 minutes this week.

Nzoia United who won the second tier in 2016, have given a good account of themselves since earning promotion to the top tier. They beat Tusker in their first ever KPL match. Last Wednesday, they went down 2-1 to Bandari. In 2016, while in the second tier, they shocked Gor Mahia, thus eliminating them from the GoTV shield.

The match will be played at Mumias Sports complex on Saturday. According to Secretary General Ben Omondi, kickoff time is 3pm.

Down Memory Lane

Back in the 1980s, Nzoia Sugar, which is the precursor of Nzoia United, used to be one of the toughest opponents for Gor Mahia especially at home. Even as Gor Mahia won the league in 1983, 84, 85 and 87, they would beat other teams by significant margins. But Nzoia was always a tough nut to crack. This despite the fact that Nzoia almost always finished in the lower half of the 20 team league.

In those days Nzoia played their home matches at Kanduyi stadium in Bungoma. They had two formidable defenders in Leonard Khayota and Evans Chibinda who was built like tank. Matches pitting the two sides at Kanduyi almost always ended in 0-0 draws and in some cases a 1-0 win for Nzoia.

The radio announcer’s statement would sum up the frustration of the fans who had been listening intently to KBC radio.

“Waskilizaji, Gor wamefanya kazi ya ziada lakini bahati haikusimama. Nzoia wameshinda (listeners, Gor really tried, but were unlucky. Nzoia have won)”

By 2001, Nzoia had turned the tables. They were now the league contenders while Kogalo fought off relegation



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  • musymo says:

    Is the match on Saturday or Sunday? There are sources that indicate Saturday and some Sunday? Clarification, please!!! That aside, I pray for another convincing scoreline accompanied by a clean sheet as a bonus.

  • Machienglo says:

    zemaria to field the right players as in the case of the last two matches. Tuysienge to start from the bench.The combination of Kagere and Timo proves to be ruthless in the absence of Batiste who is an expert in back passes.Good luck kogalo nyamnyam.Asewacho pacha karach ne ngato to ocham nyanje.

    • Adris says:

      You sound bad, are you the coach, you didn’t apply to be one so please stop forcing lineup to the tb

  • Albert Kosero - Sofaset Branch Kampala says:

    Let us prepare ourselves psychologically on this. Nzoia has always been a bad hunting ground for Gor, just like Efusi with Kisumu Posta then. A draw will be a big relief. A win will be a bonus for us. All in all let us keep the team in our prayers. Ndugu @Mwakio, tafadhali tuongoze kwenye maombi.

    In Gor, I trust. Worried about nothing. For God and my beloved club – Kogallo

  • samuel says:

    Machienglo stop your threat our coach Ze Maria our trainer Sandro Fantino are the one who shall know the fitness of players thats why they are being paid.

    • A person says:

      Threat?So far I have not seen anything like that in this forum. May be I need glasses to see it. Anyway these kind of hallucinations are uncalled for. Let’s allow bloggers to express their feelings freely. Pirifege ngeny ka tinde yawa!

  • bob says:

    This is GM’s bogey team and as always the case, they normally defy the form book. And despite the fact that they spend a decade in the lower league they will certainly give GM a lot of problems, the best is a draw, but please don’t pour vitriol if the results don’t go your way.

  • Jakoyo says:

    I hope ze maria and zico have learnt in the last 4 matches that the results of the games played boiled down to match day fielding and tacticts….mambo mara bad luck , mara the opposing team was defensive, mara weather , mara match fixing etc etc…..we don’t want to hear foolish excuses ever again in kogallo.

    I am still hoping for a convincing 5-0 scoreline sometime soon.

  • A person says:

    Kogallo must humiliate this team. We have not forgotten the way Nzoia lacked respect for Sirkal last season. Hapa kogallo ni ushindi tu. Uchambuzi ni lazima. We must speak our mind freely. We must tell the coach how we rate his players. Na hiyo naona imesaidia team. Good luck kogallo.

  • Ngesto says:

    Hahaha very funny fans behaving like coaches yet they know nothing in football, Good luck Kogalo kitu yeti ni yeti, May God be with us this Sunday Amen

  • Ngesto says:

    *yetu ni yetu, vidole ndio kubwa

  • Wuod Suba says:

    My honest advance to the coach is not to rest Kagere, Timothy , Blackberry and Wendi…In defence, Musa, Karim and Harun should start then we are done with 3 points…

  • Going back to the James Sianga era ,I can say that only Sianga and now Ze Maria r the only coaches in my opinion who have taken bold long term deliberate approach to take Gor fwd in a way that any patient observer knowledgeable about the dynamics of building tactical and effective football formations can appreciate , this at the risk of lynching by technically challenged observers who understandably analyse football from the heart , an organ whose sole specifications is purely for pumping blood and adreniline , its only long after Sianga was gone that people appreciated the deliberate turnaround of his approach , the same to Ze , the formation he is trying to implement in Gor Mahia takes time but slowly but surely we or at least I are beginning to see result oriented romantic football , compared to the ones gone in recent by I would contrast his approach with Bobby Williamson whose approach was akin to fore playless intercourse or rape ofcourse even rapes result in babies n BW got one with his efforts , going fwd am glad with Ze’s apapproach which brings back good memories of the yester Gor when the grass had close to 90% possession of the ball n its y I aint worried about nothing , The only way is up

  • Agara jnr says:

    wish Sirkal good luck and may Almighty God grant us win

  • moses says:

    This will be a cracker; both teams like Attack, attack, attack.It won’t be one sided like mashemeji derby.This is a game to watch in addition to the good playing surface and Gor’s revenge for last season defeat.

  • Oduor12 says:

    James Aggrey Sianga (RIP),due to lack of finances,was forced to work with young inexperienced,poorly paid but talented players.Ze Maria has “creme de la creme” (all talented in terms of value 4 money paid? maybe but definitely experienced & well paid) players at his disposal.Ze Maria’s main undoing has been lack of consistency with costly relapses into draws/losses.His in GMFC record is there for all to see. Do the 2 straight wins (wins are +tive sign) means he has upped his game? The game against Nzoia could not have come at a more opportune time to test his skills.Has he found the antidote for teams that play negative football? My take, Ze Maria’s style needs very talented/clinical forwards who finish off even half a chance. Are they there or does he sign in June?As long as we’re progressing towards CAF group stage am ok.Aslo, hope bloated EC does’nt derail that goal with delayed allowances aka “moneybags” issues. Win K’Ogalo Win CAF is your and much tougher than Nzoias.

  • Jasego says:

    Hello Jo Kogalo

  • @Oduor 12 , I wish to totally agree with u on this issue of a clinical finisher bcoz honestly what we have currently is not a solution now and will not be going fwd , I say this bcoz the role of a clinical finisher e.g is to provide variety of options for ZEs formation to thrive e.g what we had with Olunga , for crosses from the wings to bear fruit , we need somebody who can head the ball or control the ball and shrug off like costa allowing other players to run into space , allow the team to have options of attacking thru the centre now that wehave Muguna and can also on his own Iinitiate moves from the midfield , what we have right now surely ddoesn’t fall in that context and with the defence and midfield in good shape as it is now, what we need right now is the completion of this missing Link

  • Vs Nzoia;
    1981: 4-1 (Gedion Hamisi, Abbey Nassur [2], Michael Adede), 1-2 (Enock Obwaka)
    1982: 2-2 (Chore, Bassanga), 1-1 (Zangi)
    1983: 1-1 (Hamisi Shamba), 3-0 (Zangi [2], Gideon Hamisi)
    1984: 4-0 (Austin Oduor, Hesbon Omollo [2], Shebe), 0-0
    1985: 2-0 (Hesbon Omollo, Zamalek), 0-0
    1986: 1-1 (Hesbon Omollo), 2-0 (W. Obwaka, Anthony Ndolo)
    Nzoia relegated

    • Joe Riaga says:

      Kogalo pundit thanks for those stats. I remember Kogalo always beating Nzoia comprehennsively at city stadium. But Kanduyi was always a different story.

    • Oduor12 says:

      I salute those heroes, true gallant sons of K’Ogalo. Pure nostalgia,thanks K.P

  • The Nzoia of yesteryear is not this one. Kanduyi is not Mumias. Should Nzoia attempt to win this one, we will come back with three points in the bag.

    All the best.

    • jamriAmbo says:

      On the same note, this is not Kogallo of the 80s, This Kogallo of today would miserably finish outside top 10 in that old league.

  • ja Thur GI ji says:

    Kogalo Pundit, I didn’t know whether to cry or just smile, what nostalgic memory. Those names should be immortalised. Those who didn’t see them and who are the majority of supporters now, may not understand the kind of players they were, but they were of their own class, thank you KP, if you could give us more of that!

  • ja Thur GI ji says:

    Nzoia of today is that of yester years, this one is beatable, last year’s result was a fluke and cannot be a basis for predicting today’s performance, it’s definitely going to be different

  • ja Thur GI ji says:

    Nzoia of today is that of yester years, this one is beatable, last year’s

    Is NOT sorry

  • Barefoot Bandit says:

    Congratulations team for that important win over Nzoia United. It is noteworthy that Sammy Omolo’s Posta has dropped points and now we are 2 points clear. This win over Nzoia sets a very good climate for our meeting with Posta.

  • Dan Original says:

    Congrats team for the win