Gor Mahia’s fine form in the 2018 Kenya Premier League continued on Saturday when they recorded an impressive 2-0 win over Ulinzi at Afraha stadium. Impressive because Ulinzi stars has been one of the sides that has been difficult to beat. Last season they forced a 2-2 draw at Kisumu. This time however Gor Mahia took command with Francis Kahata and Jacque Tuyisenge scoring in the 12th and 86th minute respectively.
Coach Dylan Kerr credited his players for always remaining focused and battling.
Every team wants to be the first to beat Gor Mahia and therefore there are no easy matches for us. We knew this coming into this match and expected a tough match. We made a couple of basic errors and gave them chances. We got a goal early on and that calmed things down. We’ve had a tough week and to be honest my players looked jaded – they really battled for the points and credit goes out to them. – said Kerr after the match.
Ulinzi coach, Dunstan Nyaudo, who is a former Gor Mahia player, rued missed chances.
“We had a good game and created very many chances that we unfortunately did not convert. Gor Mahia got several and made use of theirs and that is what made the difference. My defenders also lost concentration especially towards the end of the match and we were punished for it.” – said Nyaudo
Additional reporting from futaa.com
Masuta Masita missed two glorious chances to steer Ulinzi ahead in the 4th and 6th minutes. Joash Onyango could not clear the ball as the home team pumped into Gor Mahia’s area.
Francis Kahata punished the soldiers in the 12th minute as he slotted home from close range. George Odhiambo ran down the right flank to deliver the ball and he took his time to beat the advancing Jacktone Odhiambo. Kahata was left with the easiest of options of tapping in to score his third goal of the season.
A tepid first fifteen minutes saw Ernest Wendo pick the first yellow card after a bad challenge on Bernard Ongoma. The visitors, although ahead goal wise, lost the ball rather easily with Elvis Nadwa beating Godfrey Walusimbi twice on the left flank. All the Ulinzi efforts were not rewarded as their finishing was not as clinical as to bring the much-sorted goal.
A rough collision between Meddie Kagere saw the Ulinzi man bleed from the mouth as the Rwandan elbowed him. The referee did not punish the Gor Mahia’s top striker though as Ongoma went out to receive treatment before resuming the action.
Hassan Mohamed was unlucky to be denied by the bar after he lobbed a long-range ball over Boniface Oluoch in the 57th minute. Philemon Otieno just cleared from the line as everyone in the white shirt looked beaten when Ulinzi invaded Gor’s area in the 62nd minute. George Omondi had launched a swift counter attack from the home side left flank as an equalizing goal for Ulinzi looked all but elusive.
Both Elijah Mwanzia and Omar Boraafya were handed their debuts. Jacques Tuyisenge scored the second goal for the league defending champions from a corner kick. Defensive errors handed Gor the winning goal to stretch their points to forty-three.
Ulinzi Stars Starting XI: Jacktone Odhiambo (GK), Cylus Shitote, Omar Mbongi, George Omondi, Hassan Mohamed (C) Bernard Ongoma, John Kago, Daniel Waweru (Cliff Kasuti), Elvis Nandwa (Elijah Mwanzia), Masita Masuta, Michael Otieno (Omar Boraafya).
Gor Mahia Starting XI: Boniface Oluoch, Philemon Otieno, Godfrey Walusimbi, Joash Onyango, Harun Shakava (C), Ernest Wendo, Francis Kahata, Humphrey Mieno, Jacques Tuyisenge, Meddie Kagere, George Odhiambo ( Lawrence Juma).
Gor Mahia are set to take on Ulinzi Stars at Kericho Green stadium on Saturday. They need only one point to seal their record 16th title. This puts Kogalo four titles ahead of second placed AFC who have won 12 titles and Tusker who have won 11 titles.
Since Dylan Kerr took over as coach, Gor Mahia have gone on a winning spree that has left them 14 points ahead of their closest challengers. And they have done this while playing brilliant attacking football that has seen them score 46 goals. It is for this reason that Kerr is unlikely to be looking for a draw. He will be going for an all out win.
“Most clubs opt to play a very defensive game, especially when they are playing against us but I tell my players to always enjoy themselves on the pitch,” said Kerr to the Nation.
And aside from the disappointing match against Mathare United, Kerr has found ways to keep his side motivated where other teams would have taken their foot off the accelerator pedal.
“I like the spirit I see during training and I tell them to maintain as much of it as possible on the pitch. We attack as a unit and also defend as a unit because every player knows when it is time to advance and when it is time to retreat.” he continued.
Two players who will be especially motivated are Meddie Kagere and Jacque Tuyisenge, both of whom are in the running to be the league top scorer. Yet both are completely uneselfish and often pass the ball to a more open player who is in a better scoring position.
The last time these two sides met was in Kisumu soon after Ze Maria had quit. Gor Mahia relinquished a two goal lead to settle for a 2-2 draw. Ulinzi will be hoping for another good performance.
“We missed many players in our midweek match and that had a very bad impact on our performance against Leopards. That was a game we could have easily won but we had to do with fringe players.
“This time we have a full strength squad. Geoffrey Kokoyo, Oliver Rutto and Samuel Onyango are all back from suspension and I am confident of a good result on Saturday,” said coach Benjamin Nyangweso to the Nation.
Gor Mahia have accused Stephen Waruru of provoking traveling fans by making obscene gestures at them. And according to the TV report above, the incident was witnessed by reporters. It is also against FIFA rules to celebrate in an inflammatory manner. And it brings the league into disrepute.
Yesterday, Kogalo officials also reported that their team bus was attacked by unknown people. The club has also blamed Waruru “for provoking Gor’s supporters and making obscene gestures at the travelling fans while celebrating his last-minute goal.”
“It is uncouth and barbaric of Waruru to provoke our fans by using his middle finger to insult our travelling fans,” read a statement posted on Monday on social media pages affiliated to K’Ogalo.
But Ulinzi denied the claims, saying Waruru broke out in his traditional celebratory dance “which has always included pointing to the skies using his fore finger.”
“Nothing like that happened. Gor Mahia fans were simply annoyed that they conceded an equaliser.
“Waruru always raises his fore finger skywards whenever he scores and that is what he did and it is not provocative. A number of our players were injured so we have a meeting to discuss the issue and deliberate on our next move,” said Ulinzi vice-chairman Major Joe Birgen to the Nation newspaper .
If found guilty, the 15-time champions could face a number of sanctions including stadium bans for their fans, hefty fines, as well as docking of points as was the case in May last year.
What is not in doubt is that Waruru did indeed seek to provoke fans by celebrating in front of them. This is unsportsmanlike conduct from a footballer and KPL should take action in order to prevent players from provoking fans in a similar manner in the future. The action itself and the reaction it provokes from fans brings the league into disrepute, something the league cannot afford now.
It is also conduct unbecoming of a soldier and eyewitness accounts corroborate the claim. Furthermore such indiscipline reflects poorly on the KDF at a time when they already have a lousy reputation in some circles. Therefore the KDF should sanction him as well.
Gor Mahia fans only reacted after being provoked by Waruru. The goal itself did not cause a reaction after all Gor Mahia have conceded late goals numerous times in the past.
Gor Mahia gave up a 2-0 advantage and ended up being held 2-2 by Ulinzi Stars at Moi stadium Kisumu on Sunday. Gor Mahia’s goals came from full back Karim Nizigiyimana and an own goal by Hassan Mohamed. Ulinzi then replied with two goals from Stephen Waruru.
Additional Reporting from the Standard
Ulinzi stars came from two goals down to force a 2-2 draw with hosts Gor Mahia FC in a teargas, highly charged game that nearly saw Geoffrey Kokoyo and Wellington Ochieng fight after Waruru elbowed Rwandan import Jacques Tuyisenge to the ground.
The star of the day for the soldiers was on-form Stephen Waruru, who put his name in the score sheet twice as Ulinzi Stars staged a theatrical retaliation to share spoils with the hosts.
Gor Mahia had started the game on a high note giving Ulinzi keeper James Saruni and his defense of Mohammed, Kokoyo and Oliver Ruto pressure that made Churchill Mulama to sometimes come back to help in the defense.
Karim Nzigiyimana brought in a lovely cross from the 40th yard but the effort was headed out of play by Hassan for a corner kick with just six minutes gone.
Keeper Saruni of Ulinzi was forced to come out of his area to punch the ball off the danger zone as Kenneth Muguna tried to set up Meddie Kagere two minutes later.
Muloma was then booked for a dangerous tackle as he hit Godfrey Walusimbi’s face with his elbow sending him down in the watchful eyes of the referee.
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Muguna then sent a nice volley from the left flank to find Karim who was just past the 40th yard, Karim, whizzed past Hassan, Kokoyo and Ruto to score the first goal in the 32nd minute of the game for the first half to end with Gor Leading 1-0.
In the second half, Ulinzi made two changes with John Kago swapping places with Sylas Shitote while Omar Mbongi came on for Oliver Kiprutto.
The change did not deter Gor Mahia from getting another goal as (Hassan) Mohammed scored in his area after he lobbed in the ball past Saruni for an own goal to make things 2-0 for Gor Mahia.
However, the celebration was short-lived as Stephen Waruru grabbed his brace (73rd and 87th) two minutes to stoppage and the game was interrupted for close ten minutes as chaos erupted soon after he scored an equalizer in the 87th minute of the game.
It is this second goal that made hell break loose as Waruru went to celebrate at the VIP wing when Gor Mahia fans started throwing projectiles to him and eventually into the pitch of play prompting the Police and Army officer to start through teargas on fans.
The game was momentarily stopped for ten minutes as fans and police fought each-other, with one police and one fan bearing the cost of the violence as they were hit by objects that flying all over the stadium.
A first half goal by George Odhiambo Blackberry was what Kogalo needed to win a crucial encounter against 3rd placed Ulinzi Warriors on Wednesday. The win confirms Gor Mahia’s return to winning ways. It is a crucial win because aside from narrowing the gap from league leaders Tusker to only two points, it also puts Gor Mahia six points ahead of Ulinzi who are now tied for third place with two other teams. And in a league that is increasingly tight, a win against other contenders is crucial. Gor Mahia also showed that they can grind out wins against teams like Ulinzi that resort to rough play to intimidate opponents.
Additional Reporting courtesy of futaa.com
Both teams came into the game with a win in their previous games and were cautious not to get caught off guard with Blackberry getting himself into the referee’s book after a foul on Cylus Shitote in the 4th minute. Nine minutes later K’ogalo made their first attack of the game when Karim Nizigiyimana ran on the right flank to bring in a well crafted cross that found George Odhiambo who headed it over the bar. With 20 minutes gone, the KPL reigning champions were showing their dominance and they almost took the lead with Amos Nondi doing well to find George Odhiambo whose attempted shot at goal was blocked by Saruni. The game was temporarily halted after Enos Ochieng went down in pain after trying to tackle Abouba Sibomana before Ulinzi got a chance to take the lead after Brian Birgen found Mark Makwatta who saw his shot go into Boniface Oluoch’s gloves.
However, K’ogalo finally found a way to break Ulinzi’s defense when Karim-Abdul Nizigiyimana brought in a dangerous cross from the right that found Tuyisenge who stumbled as he tried to take the shot but George Odhiambo was at the right place at the right time to slot the ball home to make it two goals in two games for himself. Gor almost extended their lead in the 44th minute after Meddie Kagere took a shot at goal which Saruni was forced to push out for a corner, Nondi took it but but Tuyisenge headed it out with Enosh Ochieng getting a yellow card for bad mouthing.
The second half began with both teams attacking and tension began to rise with Tuyisenge being taken out for treatment after being fouled by Hassan Mohammed. On returning to the field, the Rwandese international was booked for kicking the ball after the referee after he was flagged for an offside position. The referee was forced to temporarily halt the game after Omar Mbogi and Meddie Kagere start exchanging harsh words and moments later, Hassan Mohammed got a red card after stepping on Tuyisenge in an off the ball incident. With one- man advantage, Gor started to pin the Soldiers in their own half threatening their defense. Tuyisenge was a victim again in the 65th minute when he went down after being pushed by Ulinzi players in the box as Walusimbi was preparing for a throw in which forced the game to be again temporarily halted as he received treatment.
Nondi was shown a yellow card after a foul on Geoffrey Kokoyo as The Soldiers made a double change; Mark Makwatta out, Stephen Waruru in; Samuel Onyango out, Hamisi Abdalla in and Jose Marcelo Fereirra followed suit; Amos Nondi out, Godfrey Walusimbi in. Ulinzi got a free kick at the edge of the box after Kagere was ruled to have handled the ball, Waruru took but it went to Oluoch’s gloves. Ulinzi had another change; Mark Bikokwa in, Enosh Ochieng out. With ten minutes left to play, Ulinzi began to fight back as they tried to make good use of their chances but Gor Mahia’s defense was proving a hard nut to crack. K’ ogalo then made another change; George Odhiambo out, Baron Oketch in. the hosts almost got a second in the dying minutes when Walusimbi did well to overlap on the right but his well taken chip to find his teammates was well prevented by Saruni.
Gor Mahia Staring XI:
23. Boniface Oluch, 5. Musa Mohamed, 14. Karim Nizigiyimana, 18. Haron Shakava, 3. Abouba Sibomana, 20. Ernest wendo, 8. Francis Kahata, 11. Amos Nondi [2. Godfrey Walusimbi] 22. Meddie Kagere, 25. George Odhiambo [17. Baron Oketch], 9. Jacques Tuyisenge
1. Jerim Onyango, 4. Wellington Ochieng, 13. Anthony Mbugua, 27. Jacob Keli, 24. Enock Agwanda.
James Saruni, Mbogi Omar, Shitote Cylus, Kokoyo Geoffrey, Hassan Mohammed, Onyango Boniface, Brian Birgen, Kago John, Ocheing Enosh [Bikokwa Mark
], Makwatta John [Waruru Stephen], Onyango Samuel [Hamisi Abdalla]
Odhiambo Jacktone,Sande Benson, Nandwa Elvis, Waweru Daniel
With the continental campaign having come to a sudden but expected end, Gor Mahia will now shift attention to the local scene where they have two difficult yet pivotal matches: On Thursday, Gor Mahia taken on Ulinzi Stars at Afraha stadium. Three days later they confront arch rivals AFC Leopards at Nyayo stadium.
Both matches are pivotal since both Ulinzi and AFC Leopards are contenders. Both teams have four points from two games. And last season, the matches against both of these teams were inconclusive. Gor Mahia played Ulinzi with four matches left in the league. The game was marred by rough play as coach Robert Matano instructed his side to disrupt Gor Mahia by employing robust tackles. The game ended scoreless. Frank Nuttall should employ some gamesmanship by reminding the referees of Ulinzi’s rough play last season and ask them to be more watchful. The first leg match in May ended in a 2-0 win for Gor Mahia with Kagere and Olunga scoring.
Against AFC, the latter proved a tough nut to crack. Derby matches are always unpredictable. AFC were about to finally crack when they conceded a late penalty. Only for their fans to disrupt the match with acts of hooliganism.
For Gor Mahia, they will be strongly motivated to put aside their poor start. Coach Nuttall should be able to call upon players who have been unavailable of late including Ali Abondo, Francis Kahata, Innocent Wafula and Khalid Aucho. The latter two have played sparingly since they returned late.
Abondo and his clinical finishes is the man Gor Mahia will be hoping can provide a boost in the same manner he did last season, scoring crucial goals when Olunga and Kagere were yet to find their scoring boots. The Madagascan media reports that against CNaPS on Saturday, Gor Mahia dominated most of the first half but could not convert their possession into goals. In the second half they ran out of steam. A similar scenario ensued against Chemelil Sugar. Abondo could be the man to break this cycle.
Gor Mahia’s title celebration was postponed when second placed Ulinzi held them to a scoreless draw at Afraha stadium on Sunday.
courtesy of goal.com
The result means that Gor Mahia needs one point in four matches to be crowned champions for a third year in a row. Ulinzi Stars got off the blocks quicker with John Nairuka threatening with a sixth minute effort which sailed just over the bar after six minutes.
On the other side of the pitch, Michael Olunga was always threatening the Ulinzi backline. In the 10th minute, his shot found itself inside the soldier’s box but there was no one to score. The soldiers opted for a cautious approach preferring to try for long balls instead of going at the Gor Mahia backline. Two long efforts by Kevin Amwayi and John Nairuka did not produce anything positive.
A thrown in from Eric Apul targeting Mohammed Hassan got to its target but the latter was ruled to have pushed Gor Mahia goalkeeper Boniface Oluoch and the Kenyan Premier League champions were instead, awarded a free-kick.
It was Gor Mahia, who however, ended the first half on a high with Mohammed Hassan doing everything to stop Meddie Kagere and Ali ‘Tear Gas’ Abondo caught in an off-side position after a great goal bound run.
Gor Mahia started the second half strongly and it took everything for Godfrey Kokoyo to stop a goal bound Michael Olunga. Omar Mbongi earned the first caution of the match after he was judged to have fouled Innocent Wafula.
A minute later, it was the turn of Meddie Kagere to get booked after center referee Nasor Doka ruled that he had brought down Godfrey Kokoyo. Before that there had been a commotion at the Ulinzi Stars goal mouth.
Gor Mahia continued to pressurize for an opener but they had to be content with a corner-kick at the hour mark which Francis Ochieng dealt with well. Then Ulinzi Stars should have got something with John Nairuka shooting from a distance and Evans Amuoka finding himself inside the Gor Mahia box only to easily lose the ball.
Mohammed Hassan was doing everything to keep lethal striker Michael Olunga at bay and did a job of it completely denying their opponents an opener. Ulinzi goalkeeper Francis Ochieng’ was another busy player towards the end of the match and had to come out twice to deny Meddie Kagere and Innocent Wafula even as Khalid Aucho got himself booked for dissent.
With five minutes to the end, Olunga set up Khalid Aucho but the Ugandan blasted wide instead of simply tapping home the effort.
Gor Mahia beat Ulinzi 2-0 in an entertaining Kenya Premier League match. Yet again the scorers were Kagere and Olunga.
But it was not just the fact that they both scored. Whats even more impressive is how they set each other up for goals. And how they are beginning to develop an understanding and a cohesion that will soon give KPL defenders sleepless nights. This combination is starting to be reminiscent of the Sserunkuma-Rama partnership of 2012.
The match was well balanced in the first half with both teams giving a good account of themselves. Ulinzi as usual were highly physical. But they found that Collins Okoth “Gattuso” and Khalid Aucho in the Gor Mahia engine room were equally adept at dishing out physicality and Olunga is not easily muscled off the ball.
The first goal was scored by Kagere on the stroke of half-time. Khalid Aucho headed the ball towards the Ulinzi goal. Olunga who is a constant bane to many defences, worried James Saruni and in the Ulinzi goal. Saruni thus failed to deal decisively with the ball and it fell to Kagere who scored. Gor Mahia went to half time leading 1-0.
It is the second week in a row in which Olunga has worried a defender into a costly mistake.
In the second half, coach Nuttall replaced Ali Abondo with Innocent Wafula. He had an immediate impact, setting up Olunga to score the second goal.
Late Substitute George Odhiambo Blackberry almost scored in the waning moments but he could not finish after a sublime piece of skill.
It was an impressive win for Gor Mahia against a team that is normally a difficult proposition for Gor Mahia to deal with. This is a team that prior to today was third in the league table and had not lost a match. And today was no different because Ulinzi came very motivated and ready to play. But Gor Mahia are proving resilient.
Thanks to the resiliency, tactical discipline and brilliant display by the players, Gor Mahia continue to march on with what is their most impressive start since the Kenya Premier league was inaugurated. Gor Mahia: Starting XI: Bonface Oluoch – Musa Mohamed – Karim Nizigiyimana – Abouba Sibomana – Collins Okoth – Ali Abondo (29. Innocent Wafula) – 18. Harun Shakava – Meddie Kagere – Godfrey Walusimbi( Ronald Otien) – Michael Olunga (25. George Odhiambo) – Khalid Aucho.
Unused Subs: Jerim Onyango – Benard Odhiambo – Eric Ochieng. – Ernest Wendo.
Gor Mahia will be seeking to extend their unbeaten run when they take on Ulinzi Stars this Saturday. Matches against Ulinzi are never easy and though Gor Mahia has the upper hand, many of these encounters end in draws. When these two teams last met on September 17 of 2014, the game ended scoreless.
“Matches between us and Gor Mahia have always been very tough but we are ready for them. They have started the season very well but so have we. Our confidence has risen very well and everyone in the unit is itching to do well and win matches,” said James Saruni the Ulinzi vice captain when speaking to his club’s site.
Robert Matano is a very effective coach when it comes to spoiling the game. But in coach Frank Nuttall he will be facing a formidable opponent who has proven adept at prying open defences. But Ulinzi are confident that they can keep a clean sheet against Gor Mahia
“Gor Mahia have very good strikers and we should be very wary of them. But what I am confident of is our defence which has been very sharp this season. We have kept four clean sheets in eight games and in all we have conceded only six. That goes to show how much of a tight defence we have.”
Gor Mahia will be approaching this game with caution.
“Currently we are riding high but that does not matter on match day, we might wake up on the wrong side which might affect our output. We just hope we will keep the momentum going and emerge victorious. It will be a huge step forward for us.” said Gor Mahia assistant coach Frank Ouna.