As Gor Mahia players boycotted training as has been the norm ahead of continental matches this season, Zambian side Napsa Stars arrived in the country on Wednesday ahead of Sunday's first leg of their Caf Confederation Cup playoff.
Players' strikes have been the order of the day for the 19-time league champions this season and Wednesday was no different as the players failed to turn up for training at the Camp Toyoyo grounds demanding two months salary arrears.
Gor players went on strike before their Caf Champions League preliminary round tie against Rwanda's APR, a contest they eventually won 4-3 on aggregate.
The same situation was witnessed before their trip to Algeria to face CR Belouizdad in the first round of the same competition.
They were thrashed 8-1 on aggregate and missed out on the group stages of the prestigious competition, dorpping to the Confederation Cup playoffs.
The players are accusing the management of reneging on a promise to pay them immediately after Sunday's scoreless 'Mashemeji' Derby against arch rivals AFC Leopards.
"Nobody is training even the Brazilian who joined the team recently. Players are always accused of boycotts before big matches, but fans should also understand our morale is down because we are broke, in debt and have no food," said a senior player, who did not wish to be named.
"I hear they always bash journalists for reporting on the boycott and want them to reveal our names. But it is the truth they are reporting and we are just fighting for our right," said another player.
Efforts to get a comment from club chairman Ambrose Rachier provide futle as his phone went unanswered.
'Calabar' loyal to Napsa
Immediately after arrival, Napsa checked in at a local hotel and are set to hold their first training session Thursday at Moi Sports Centre Kasarani as well as Friday, before having a feel of the match venue at Nyayo National Stadium on Saturday.
The team boasts of former Gor Mahia defender David 'Calabar' Owino and custodian Shabaan Odhonji. Former Mathare United forward Andrew Tololwa also plies his trade with the club.
Owino, who joined Napsa Stars just last month from Zesco United, has so far featured in all the club's league matches.
He told Nation Sport that despite playing for Gor and even training with them before his move, he will fight to ensure Napsa qualifies for the group stage of the competiton.
"Caf matches are the biggest games in Africa and as a player it has always been my target to play in the group stage every season. It is always good to play against players and a team you are familiar with,” Owino told Nation Sport.
“Even though I am a Gor Mahia fan and former player, loyalty won’t count as I will fight for Napsa Stars to ensure we qualify for the group stages. We have very experienced players and I am confident we shall win on Sunday," he added.
Ugandan referee William Oloya will over see the match and will be assisted by fellow countrymen Lee Okell and Issa Masembe. Chelanget Ali Saliba also from Uganda will be the fourth official, while the Match Commissioner will be Alexis Nshimiyimana from Rwanda.
While Gor Mahia are in an unusual sixth position on the Football Kenya Federation Premier League log with 16 points from nine matches, Napsa have amassed 18 points and are 13th from 16 games played so far in the Zambian Super League.
Napsa Stars travelling squad
Philip Banda, Rabson Muchelenganga and Shabaan Odhonji
David Owino, Luka Banda, Luka Nguni, Aaron Kabwe, Lawrence Chungu, Bornwell Selengo, Amos Simwanza
Jacob Ngulube, Daniel Adoko, Simon Nkhata, Dickson Chapa, Danny Silavwe, Enock Sabumukama, Austin Banda, Aaron Banda
Chanda Mushili, Laudit Mavugo, Jimmy Mukeya, Doisy Soko, Tapson Kaseba
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A Daily Nation Report says that yet again Gor Mahia players have boycotted training