Reports of Ze Maria’s return and Pollack’s departure


Despite coach Steve Pollack vehemently denying that he was leaving, there are numerous reports that he has indeed been replaced by Ze Maria

Additional reporting from goal.com
The KPL heavyweights are set to confirm the former KF Tirana tactician as the new man in charge as Steven Polack has left the country

Jose Marcelo Ferreira (Ze Maria) is expected to be appointed Gor Mahia’s head coach, Goal can exclusively reveal.

Rumours of the Brazilian’s return to the Kenyan Premier League (KPL) has gathered speed over the past few days and now a source close to K’Ogalo has intimated he is set to be appointed as a coach again.

“Unless something big or very special happens, Ze Maria is the new coach,” the source revealed.
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“Gor Mahia have been in the market for a few weeks searching for a new coach since they were sure Polack will not be part of them going forward.

“The hierarchy settled on Ze Maria unanimously because of his previous experience and of course his undoubted love for our team.

“I am saying the office settled on him unanimously because the new officials are working with unity since it is a lean office compared to the previous one.”

Ze Maria’s news comes just a day after coach Steven Polack requested for a 10-day holiday before the 2020/21 season begins.

A source close to Gor Mahia told Goal that Polack has left his role after he tabled a few needs he wanted the club to sort out before the new campaign begins.

“We are aware of how the previous coaches took holidays only to confirm their resignation while away from the club. Take it from me brother, he [Polack] is not returning,” the source said in regard to the Polack issue.

“He asked for a one-way ticket and all pending salaries before he left and this is the reason I am telling you he is gone. He had issues which seems are not going to be resolved any time soon.

“That is why he has left.”

In a recent interview, the former Inter Milan and Levante right-back-cum-midfielder Ze Maria revealed how coaching Gor Mahia was an exciting role.

“It was the biggest club in Kenya, so every game was like managing Flamengo or Corinthians in Brazil. The stadium was packed,” Ze Maria said then.

“There were difficulties. Sometimes you go to a stadium where the players don’t all fit in the changing room, so you have to change on the bus.

“But the passion is absurd. African players are technically similar to Brazilians, but they lack opportunities to move to bigger leagues.

“Because of the pitches, when you dribble, the ball would bounce a metre up in the air, but the quality with which they controlled and conducted it, not even a Brazilian would do that.”

The Brazilian succeeded Frank Nuttall, who had led K’Ogalo to the 2015 KPL title with an unbeaten record, but resigned in 2017 abruptly before joining KF Tirana.

He exited the club after it had just won the SportPesa Super Cup and were on top of the KPL table with 27 points.

Although Ze Maria could be appointed soon, Polack has maintained he will travel back and resume his duties.

“I am not a coward to leave and not to come back. I have a two-way ticket; after finishing my business with family at home, Gor Mahia will be my next step in preparations for the 2020/21 KPL season,” the Finnish coach told Goal.

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Pollack headed to Finland on holiday

Gor Mahia coach Steve Pollack is headed to Finland on a much anticipated 10-day holiday.

Additional reporting from the Standard

vice chairman Francis Wasuna said Pollack requested for the holiday ahead of the much-anticipated resumption of sporting activities in the country.

“Pollack will be hitting the run-way tonight to Finland for a 10-day.

“The coach (Pollack) requested for some days off and we gave him 10 days and he will be travelling tonight to Finland,” Wasuna said in a statement on Friday.

The vice-chairman, however, pointed out Pollack is expected back in Kenya after the stated days unless the plot is interfered with by quarantine programs where an extension will be needed.

“The plan is to have him (Pollack) back after 10 days but we are not sure of any quarantine programs the other end.

“If it happens and his 10 days are interfered with, then an extension of his stay in Finland might be necessary,” Wasuna stated.

The football season is back and with it, the ever buzzing transfer window.

During this period, football clubs all over the world are allowed to transfer, exchange, or release players, either at an agreed fee or for free, depending on a player’s contract situation.

Jerim Onyango joins senior team as coach

Former Gor Mahia captain Jerim Onyango who has been working with the Gor Mahia youth team, will now work with the senior team as goalkeeper trainer.

Additional reporting from pepeta.co.ke

Onyango has been the team manager of the junior team but the club has now moved him to work closely with the goalkeepers from the senior and junior sides with Collins Kalee now slotting in as the manager of the junior side.

Through the new Secretary General Mr. Samuel Ochola the changes have been necessitated by the need to have a seamless team.

“The changes have been necessitated by the need to have a seamless team working together. There will be combined training sessions where the juniors can learn from the senior team and the coaching staff too can work and learn from each other for the betterment of the club.

“We will be having a lean committee with much being done at the club’s secretariat and that means, we will not be outsourcing services,” Ochola said.

On his elevation, Kalee said: “I am delighted because I have been there since the inception of the junior team and I appreciate what the office has done. I will work to ensure the youth team produce players who are good enough to play at senior levels so that as a club we save on the expenditure towards signing new players.”

With Kalee as the team manager, Kennedy Ochola will take up the kit manager position with Celestinus Otieno as his assistant.

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