Oktay is not coach yet

In a confusing turn of events, Gor Mahia chairman Ambrose Rachier has told the Daily Nation that Hassan Oktay will not be named head coach until other candidates are assessed as well.

Story from the Daily Nation

Hassan Oktay is not yet Gor Mahia coach but is among the four possible candidates in the race to take over the vacant head coach position, club’s chairman Ambrose Rachier has clarified.

Rachier has said that Oktay will face off with Stefano Maccopi from Italy, former Asante Kokoto coach Steven Polack (Finland) and a fourth coach who is believed to be of Russian descent.

The successful candidate will step in the shoes vacated by Englishman Dylan Kerr who has since joined up South African Premier Soccer League (PSL) outfit Black Leopards.

Press reports had on Sunday indicated that Oktay had taken over the reins at the Sportpesa Premier League defending champions and he even gave halftime pep talk during K’Ogalo’s 1-0 loss to Kariobangi Sharks in the Kenya Premier League Super Cup at the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani.

Oktay will also travel with Gor Mahia to Blantyre as they seek to defend their slim 1-0 win against Nyasa Big Bullets in Caf Champions League preliminary round. The winner of this tie will meet the victor between Cameroonian side USM de Loum and Nigerian side Lobi Stars.

Rachier has  described Oktay as an experienced coach and affordable placing the Turkish-Cypriot in pole position to be named as Kerr’s successor. “Hassan (Oktay) has a lot of experience coaching in West Ham, he has also won the league in Thailand and speaks very good English having worked in a premier league team as an assistant coach, we felt attracted,” Rachier said.

Who is Hassan Oktay?

There are reports in certain sections of the media suggest that Hassan Oktay, a coach of Cypriot Turkish origin, will be taking over as head coach at Gor Mahia FC. Oktay has spent most of his coaching career in the UK and has mostly coached none-league teams.

He is currently assistant coach at Braintree Town FC where the head coach is another Turk Hakan Hayrettin. Braintree is a semi-professional team that plays in the English fifth tier.  They are currently at the bottom of the table and are certain to be relegated further.

Oktay and Hayrettin have coached together at three separate teams with Oktay being described as the tactical mind and Hayrettin as the motivator.

According to Mike Okinyi, Oktay will be on 3 months probation. He will watch the match against Kariobangi Sharks from the terraces.

Oktay gained his UEFA A Licence at West Ham United and has also worked at Grays Athletic where he was head coach in 2013, Banbury United where he was assistant coach as well as Watford Academy, Waltham Forest and Thurrock.

In his last head coaching gig, he coached Grays athletic in the Isthmian League which is a regional league in London. The club finished 14th out of 22 teams. And at Thurrock he did not exactly get a ringing endorsement.