Gor Mahia continued their irrepressible and unstoppable march towards the 2017 Kenya Premier league title when they beat Sofapaka 2-1 in Kisumu on Wednesday. Goals came via Meddie Kagere and George Odhiambo.
Additional Reporting from Capital FM
Umar Kassumba’s 10th goal of the season had cancelled out George ‘Blackberry’ odhiambo’s ninth minute belter, but Kagere headed home in the 63rd minute to ensure Dylan Kerr’s unbeaten run as Gor Mahia head coach remained intact.
Kagere’s winner was a huge relief for his fellow Rwandese Jack Tuyisenge who minutes before the goal had rocketed a penalty over the bar and Kagere duly ran to him after hitting the winner, consoling him that he’d already wiped his tears.
According to the new standings released by KPL excluding Zoo Kericho and Nakumatt, Gor went eight points clear of second placed Kakamega Homeboyz at the top of the standings.
On form Blackberry gave Gor the lead in the ninth minute striking is second consecutive goal in less than three days and his fourth of the season with a belter from 18 yards out which found the Sofapaka keeper flat footed.
Just like it has been their norm Gor started the much wit positivity and attacking football and just four minutes after Odhiambo’s goal, Kagere came close to a second with his tap from a Kenneth Muguna pass going wide.
Sofapaka gradually grew into the match and had two chances in the space of 10 minutes. First, in the 20th minute, Kennedy Oduor’s shot from the edge of the area went over while later, an Oduor cross landed on Kasumba who headed over.
The renewed pressure by Sofapaka bore fruit five minutes from time when Kassumba nodded home his 10th goal of the season, rising up to connect to fellow Ugandan Rodgers Aloro’s cross.
At the start of the second half, Sofapaka head coach Sam Ssimbwa made two changes at a go, pulling out Morven Otinya and Bernard Mang’oli for Ezekiel Okare and Hillary Echesa.
Echesa wasn’t as lucky with his introduction as 13 minutes after coming on to the pitch his tripped Francis Kahata inside the box, but Tuyisenge could not hit the target from the resultant spot-kick, shooting the ball over.
But five minutes later, his blushes were redeemed by Kagere who swung in a header from a Godfrey Walusimbi cross to take his side back into the lead.
Gor were however made to finish the match uncomfortably as Sofapaka raided their rear and in the 75th minute, Okare missed a golden opportunity from close range when Gor keeper Boniface Oluoch blocked his connection from a Kassumba cross.
Ten minutes to time, Odhiambo should have sealed the victory for Gor Mahia when he rounded off the keeper, but his final effort could only hit the side netting.