Gor Mahia head coach Jose Marcelo Ferreira resigns

By alex wafula
Jun 16, 2017
  • Gor Mahia and AFC Leopards will be without their coaches at the start of the second leg after Stewart Hall and Jose Marcelo Ferreira 'Zico' left. (SNA. File Photo)

Brazilian Jose Marcelo Ferreira has resigned as the Gor Mahia FC head coach.

The tactician tendered his resignation to Ambrose Rachier, the K’Ogalo chair on Thursday and immediately took on a flight back to his native Brazil.

He had only jetted back to the country less than a week ago having gone home for mid-season break and was on the bench last Sunday as Gor won the SportPesa Super Cup.

“We have accepted his resignation because he seemed to have his mind made up already. He has only said he is going because of family issues but as a club we had no dispute with him and he has not written in his letter whether he left due to differences with the management,” Rachier told Sports News Arena.

Rachier rebuffed claims that the coach was infuriated due to non-payment of owed moneys. “We don’t owe him any money. We have paid him every month on time. So there is no issue whatsoever with him,” he noted.

Ze Maria leaves the club perched at the top of the log with his first assistant Zedekiah Otieno now taking over as coach.

Rachier said they will make a decision after an executive committee meeting on whether they will hire an expatriate or they will keep faith in their club legend, Zico.

The Brazilian arrived in the country last year March. He failed to defend the KPL title which Gor had won with an unbeaten run in 2016 as well as their KPL Top 8 title.

Hopes of silverware

This season, hopes of silverware were high as he started the season with the KPL Super Cup conquest.

Zico’s first match in charge will be on Sunday when Gor travels to Meru to take on a rejuvenated and revamped Sofapaka.

The tactician seemed to have already started familiarizing himself with the job as he took charge of the team during the Super Cup, managing to get to the final winning both games in regular time.

K’Ogalo will be wary of a Sofapaka side that has been busy in the transfer window, coach Sam Ssimbwa bringing in new players to aid their bid for a second Premier League title.

Batoto ba Mungu have brought signed left back Wesley Onguso from Western Stima, Abdulatiff Omar from Bandari, the Chemelil Sugar duo of Hillary Echesa and Willis Ouma who are both returning from the club and Palos hit man Morven Otinya.

Also joining are the Ugandan duo of Feni Ali from URA and Umar Kassumba from SC Villa. The club is also in talks with out of contract AFC Leopards captain Bernard Mang’oli.

The 2009 champions have already released 12 players among them starters Paul Odhiambo and Moses Odhiambo. Paul Odhiambo's contract ended and he chose to join reigning league champions Tusker FC.

Other players released from the club include Ugandans Wanok Pate and James Kasibante, Jaffer Gichuki, Edgar Waudo, Collins Kisuya, Augustine Etemesi, Dennis Wafula, John Walubuka and Mark Wasirwa.

Bagoole has been promoted 

Ugandan Johnson Bagoole has been promoted to the coaching team to be the assistant coach of the under-20 team.

“We have put together a very strong team and I am confident we will be competitive in the second leg. We want to start well against Gor Mahia. We know it is a big team but we are also equally big,” Ssimbwa said ahead of the match.

Elsewhere, defending champions Tusker FC will tackle a tricky away trip to Machakosto play against  Kariobangi Sharks.

Tusker are second on the log with 27 points, same as leaders Gor but with an inferior goal difference. The alemen have won all their last seven league matches.

They come up against a Kariobangi Sharks side which has won four of its last seven matches and drawn three. George Nsimbe, the Tusker FC coach is wary of the threat posed by Kariobangi Sharks.

The Premier league new boys who are fifth on the log will be without striker Massoud Juma who has travelled to Sweden for trials with top tier side AIK.

In other matches of the weekend, two struggling sides, AFC Leopards and Mathare United tackle each other at the Nyayo National Stadium.

Romanian Dorian Marin will be taking charge of his first league match with Ingwe after taking over from Stewart Hall. He already took charge of AFC Leopards’ last two matches of the Super Cup in Dar es Salaam last week.

AFC Leopards are 12th on the standings and are winless in their last seven league matches, five of them being losses.

Huge task ahead

Marin who has a huge task ahead of him remains confident that he can bring in some flair to the club. The side has already signed Ugandan international Keziron Kizito and Burundian forward Alex Kitenge.

Ugandan midfielder Musa Mudde is the latest addition to the squad. The club announced his arrival on Thursday evening from Bandari FC.

Mathare on the other hand is a side tinkering on more struggles in the second leg. Left back David Mwangi has decamped to Tusker FC while striker Ronald Okoth decided to leave the club on mutual consent.

The only experienced man joining the Slum Boys is former Chemelil Sugar left back Samwel Olwande who comes in on a six month loan deal from Tusker FC.

Others are Ronald Reagan from second tier side Kibera Black Stars and Frank Liyayi from Nairobi Regional League side Kenafric. Mathare are bottom on the log with nine points after 13 matches.

KPL Weekend fixtures: (All games kick off 3 p.m.)

Saturday: AFC Leopards v Mathare United (Nyayo Stadium), Chemelil Sugar v Nzoia Sugar (Chemelil Complex), Thika United v Posta Rangers (Thika Sub-County Stadium).

Sunday: Bandari v Western Stima (Mbaraki Complex), Kakamega Homeboyz v Zoo Kericho (Mumias Complex), Kariobangi Sharks v Tusker FC (Kenyatta Stadium Machakos), Muhoroni Youth v Nakumatt (Muhoroni), Sofapaka v Gor Mahia (Kinoru Stadium, Meru), Ulinzi Stars v Sony Sugar (Afraha Stadium, Nakuru).