Oktay: Kipkirui, Muguna, Onyango, Shakava should be in AFCON squad

Gor Mahia coach Hassan Oktay is adamant that some of his players are getting the short shrift when it comes to selection to the national team.

In particular he has mentioned Kenneth Muguna, Nicholas Kipkirui, Harun Shakava and Samuel Onyango as players who should be headed to Egypt if selection was fair.

“I said it before and will still repeat the same, Nicholas Kipkirui and Kenneth Muguna are good players who deserve to be in the national team. Captain Harun Shakava is also on form and should be in the squad. I don’t know why they are not included in the squad,”

Muguna has been an excellent performer since the second leg of the league started. Winning balls decisively despite his slender frame as he did when he dispossed an AFC player on Sunday leading to the second goal. Engineering lightning quick counter-attacks as he did against Sofapaka last week, finding Kahata as the latter was racing down the right flank, leading to the second goal against Sofapaka. And his passes have been sharp, leading to numerous goals including the second goal against AFC. Some wrote him off after he had a poor start to the season after a long layoff . Many more wrote him off after he questioned coach Oktay’s player selection criteria.

Kipkirui has shown that he has a poachers instinct. His ability to make intelligent runs into the box has resulted in 12 goals for himself this season. Not much was expected from him when he joined. He has been the revelation of the season and should be rewarded with a place in the national team.

Samuel Onyango has been solid all season, scoring often despite not starting in many games. Most memorable was his goal against Lobi Stars whereby he left two Naija defenders sprawled on the grass before planting the ball into the empty net.

“Look, like for Kipkirui he deserves to be in the U23 squad and now he has already matured and can feature for the senior team. Samuel Onyango is also having a season of his life and deserves to be considered. I am not defending them because they are Gor Mahia players, but because they deserve to be in the squad.” continued Oktay.

Shakava is solid in defense and has gone about the business of defending and captaining. He has been professional and did not raise a complaint when coach Oktay handed the captains armband to Dennis Oliech. All in all Shakava has been a tall pillar in the Kogalo defense.

On Sunday many fans were left wondering how Paul Were was selected ahead of the Kogalo players. Its a situation similar to 1997 and 1998 when Gor Mahia had the countries best midfielders in Dan Ogada, Tom Okaya, Frazier Ochieng and others but they were ignored by the national team selectors.

Oktay: We were the better side

Coach Oktay also lauded his side for dominating against their arch rivals on Sunday.

“This did not look like a derby. I can’t believe it. Apart from the numbers it is impossible to know that this was a derby. We dominated the game, we created and missed many chances, were able to play great football. They (Leopards) didn’t give us the expected completion,”  he told goal.com

For his part AFC coach Casa Mbungo admitted that Kogalo has better players but vowed to strengthen his side for next season.

“They caught us. We had come to give them a challenge but they were better than us today. I will ask the office to provide a good budget so that we can make good signings at the end of the season. That is the only way we can compete favourably against Gor,” he said

“I said it before and will still repeat the same, Nicholas Kipkirui and Kenneth Muguna are good players who deserve to be in the national team. Captain Harun Shakava is also on form and should be in the squad. I don’t know why they are not included in the squad,”

17 thoughts on “Oktay: Kipkirui, Muguna, Onyango, Shakava should be in AFCON squad

    1. @Jamriambo, this the same stale narrative story. Can you direct it to Gor Mahia official website where the officials can see it?

  1. The coach is 110% right on Kipkirui, Muguna, Onyango and Shakava for the national team coach to select them for AFCON. I can still repeat without contradiction, fear and favour that Okumbi and Kimanzi are misleading Coach Migne on the selection of the national team players. These two coaches have been biased and will only consider players from their mediocre clubs and tribesmen. This is the main reason why Kenya football can’t develop.

  2. Jamigori
    You are right, spot on. Kenyan football will not get anywhere with blatant biaesd diabolical and shameless selection of national team.

    How else do you explain selecting two goalkeepers from one club that has leaked in “34 goals” at the expense of INTERNATIONALLY experienced keepers.

    It is daylight roberry

  3. The criteria used in any sports to select a player to be part of a team is based on a few basics and that being first of all the ability and capacity of a player , the last known consistent form of a player in measured matches and more preferably against peer or superior opponents , the system the coach wants to play and the capacity of each to fit into that system and then experience of playing at the level for which the selection is being done for .
    Its on that basis that I may have issues with the selection of not only Sharks reserve goalkeeper but also their first keeper , neither of them in comparison to say Fred Odhiambo possess superior ability , capacity , form or any known experience at any elite level , all of which Fred fits .
    Secondly , the selection of one Masoud Juma who has been unable to nail down any known serious contract in his professional life and is supposedly signed to a club in the warzone of Tripoli where no football activities goes on , ( infact the last Afcon qualifier between Libya and South Africa had to be played outside libya ), and to choose him over Jesse Were who apart from being the golden boot winner in the Zambian league , has equally prooved his worth against worthy elite opponents on the African stage and my proof less opinion is that Masoud , just like the two goalkeepers are in the team courtesy of their Kariobangi Sharks connection .
    Finally ,those who have memories of how Reinhard Fabish created a team or going further to one Bernard Zgoll should never have any hope that the criteria currently being used will ever bring out the real football potential Kenya possesses , Fabish came up with players nobody ever knew existed by going to mashinani and picking talents from the source and not sitting in Nairobi and waiting to be brought for players by local assistants with vested interests , and to the Gor Mahia fraternity who have over the years witnessed how rewards are given e.g player of the year , should not be surprised at whats going on , We are in a country of fakes , fake gold , fake dams , fake elections and even fake bloggers but I agree with the quality of 80% of the players selected despite it based on a criteria that I disagree with .

  4. I beg to differ…while these four mentioned players are good,I don’t think they have done enough over the season to warrant a call up to Afcon.

    I believe players are called up depending on various aspects and tactics the coach wishes to deploy.For me shakava and onyango have not been consistent enough.

    Kirui is still settling into the team with good promise but is not there yet.Muguna has had a stop-start season so I don’t think he is quite ready yet.

    Most…note not all players called for afcon have had a good season for their teams.It’s obvious there was some bias here and there but the buck stops with the coach..if we fail if we succeed it’s his to answer!

    1. @ Oswozo, you seem to make a point but I will fault you on several grounds.
      1.Shakava partnering Joash have leaked in the least number of goals in the KPL and that proves his consistency.
      2. Muguna is arguably the best attacking central midfielder in the KPL this season based on statistics. His start-stop season is not his mistake. He was first sidelined by the coach for subjective reasons but through sheer guts forced himself into the coach’s plans and has delivered in every game he has played. If you watch most Gor Mahia matches you would attest to that.
      3. Samuel Onyango is a winger but is the top scorer for Gor Mahia despite playing only half the matches this season.That counts for something.

      Finally, kindly answer me these questions:
      1. If Shakava does not deserve a call up, what has Benard Ochieng of Vihiga has done better to deserve selection ahead of him? Check how many goals he has shipped.
      2. You say Muguna is not good enough, how about Isuza? He has scored enough goals yes but he is a creative midfielder, how creative has he been? Kindly review Ingwe matches this season and revert
      3. Samuel Onyango misses but Paul Were makes the cut. Based on Were’s long lay-off and very unproductive output for Ingwe since joining topped by his circus in the derby do you think he is better than Samuel?

      The coach has full rights to pick his team you say, don’t forget we also reserve full rights to critique his selection and no right is greater than the other, dontcha think so?

      1. @Musymo, I am in total agreement with your comments and let @Oswozo Moziek answer these good questions unless he is watching a different league from KPL. I do not need to add any further comments.

        Musymo, you have said in all and it is the naked truth.

  5. It seems to me that HS players are not being picked entirely on merit but based on some balancing act where not more than a certain number of players should be picked from one club. Given that we already have three players in the team, could that be the reason why they don’t want to pick any more? If that’s the criteria, then coach Migne is bullshitting Kenyans. He needs to be reminded that a good coach wouldn’t mind picking even an entire team from one club if that is what will give him winning combination.

  6. Oktay and migne clearly come from different school of thoughts….my take is as follows.

    1. Miguna is good but he is not a ball winner in midfield. He may create the chances for others but can he dictate and control tempo like wanyama, Duncan otieno , teddy akumu or even whyvonne isuza ? The pecking order has been followed to the order.

    2. Shakava is error prone and can cost you big games ….surely calabah, musa mohammed and Mandela are always a safe bet any given day.

    3.kipkirui is good but if you factor what allan wanga can bring to the game, then he doesn’t stand a chance. Since migne, always plays 4-3-3 with olunga in center forward, it will take some time before kipkirui breaks into starting eleven considering the likes of masoud juma and piston mutambi are also knocking the door.

    4.Samuel onyango and shakava are birds of the same feathers. They blow hot and cold in seconds….ayub timbe , Paul were and miheso have the cutting edge.

  7. @musymo ..with all due respect I think jakoyo has answered the pertinent questions on my behalf.

    Bernard Ochieng and isuza may not make the final squad and are there as understudies to make up the numbers.

    Finally,Muguna said it himself…he did not do enough this season to warrant a call up for afcon but will be happy to do duty for Chan and wishes the players ahead of him all the best in Egypt as they merited selection ahead of him…those were his words!!

  8. Just as I was about to type , I noticed @Jakoyo had already posted exactly what I was going to post , but if I was to add a few things , this guy Samuel Onyango has prooved that he has the potential to be in the national team and beyond but he really needs to self acknowledge that potential and appreciate that at the end of the day it is him Vs the world for the available scarce opportunities the world offers .
    Secondly I wish to disagree with @Musymo on the issue of Paul Were in the sense that even Leroy Sane’s or Raheem Sterling’s output with their current form would go unnoticed were they to individually be in this Afc team , I watched Were against Ghana not so long ago playing alongside his peers and the guy still got it even if is as a sub , a keen eye would have seen the same even in the derby .
    At the goalkeeping area , I still maintain that Fred Odhiambo is way above the kariobangi duo in all aspects .

  9. Very good analysis @jakoyo but may I engage you further in this interesting debate.
    1. Muguna is a creative midfielder and ball winning duties are the preserve of his defensive partner. His skill set should be rich mainly in vision and awareness, attributes you can agree he possesses in abundance. But still Muguna wins a fair share of balls including the one he robbed from Tsuma to set up the second goal. In that same match kindly review it and tell me how many other duels he won because the evidence is there. Isuza is not a ball winner but positions himself well and knows how to guard possession which are not the attributes we are discussing here. And you say Isuza can dictate tempo better than Muguna. Did you watch the derby bro???????
    2. When you claim Shakava is error prone, which season are you referring to? because Oktay clearly says he is having a good season which means we are talking about this season. In seasons gone by he has had his fair share of howlers but can you at least agree with me that this season he has rarely blundered? And you cannot tell me Bernard Ochieng of Vihiga is better than him. In other news Mandela’s team is facing relegation down South. That says a lot about his form and defensive abilities currently.
    3. What has Masoud Juma and Piston Mutamba done this season to compare them to Kipkirui?
    4. You say Were and Miheso fit the bill ahead of Samuel, what are your reasons? I already explained why I think Samuel should have been picked
    ahead of Were. Kindly qualify your opinion why Were more particularly should play ahead of Samuel

  10. Very good analysis @jakoyo but may I engage you further in this interesting debate.
    1. Muguna is a creative midfielder and ball winning duties are the preserve of his defensive partner. His skill set should be rich mainly in vision and awareness, attributes you can agree he possesses in abundance. But still Muguna wins a fair share of balls including the one he robbed from Tsuma to set up the second goal. In that same match kindly review it and tell me how many other duels he won because the evidence is there. Isuza is not a ball winner but positions himself well and knows how to guard possession which are not the attributes we are discussing here. And you say Isuza can dictate tempo better than Muguna. Did you watch the derby bro???????
    2. When you claim Shakava is error prone, which season are you referring to? because Oktay clearly says he is having a good season which means we are talking about this season. In seasons gone by he has had his fair share of howlers but can you at least agree with me that this season he has rarely blundered? And you cannot tell me Bernard Ochieng of Vihiga is better than him. In other news Mandela’s team is facing relegation down South. That says a lot about his form and defensive abilities currently.
    3. What has Masoud Juma and Piston Mutamba done this season to compare them to Kipkirui?
    4. You say Were and Miheso fit the bill ahead of Samuel, what are your reasons? I already explained why I think Samuel should have been picked
    ahead of Were. Kindly qualify your opinion why Were more particularly should play ahead of Samuel

  11. Basically fans of different teams will tell you why players of the teams they support should be included in the afcon team.So this will be a never ending debate.Let Migne do his job with the players he has selected then we can comprehensively give our verdicts after the tournament.

  12. @musymo, its unfortunate KPL teams dont keep individual player stats the way other football clubs in the world do…that would form a strong basis for future arguments.

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