Sofapaka knocked out of GOtv Shield by 'the president's team'

By alex wafula
Jul 23, 2017
  • Kariobangi Sharks translated their good KPL to the GOtv when they knocked out Sofapaka. (Photo by Shutterspeed)

Sam Ssimbwa, the Sofapaka coach declined to make post match comments after his side lost 3-1 to Kariobangi Sharks on Sunday in the GOtv Shield Round of 16.

The Ugandan coach was once again furious with the officiating. He alleged his side was treated unfairly because they were playing against ‘the president’s team’.

Perhaps, Ssimbwa’s side should eat a humble pie, admit defeat and focus on KPL because they missed countless scoring opportunities.

Assistant coach John Baraza, speaking to Sports News Arena said his side lost because they couldn’t convert their chances.

“If you look at the chances we had especially in the first half, I think we only have ourselves to blame. I don’t even know what happened today because we did not play as we usually do,” Baraza said.

A second half brace from Massoud Juma added on to a first half strike by Paul Kamau and Umar Kassumba’s late goal only acted as consolation for Sofapaka.

William Muluya, the Kariobangi Sharks coach was pleased with his side’s performance despite missing three key players.

“Last year we reached the semis and this time round we want to see whether we can go all the way to the finals. We are done with this and now we focus on the quarter finals. I am pleased with the performance of the whole team and it shows that we have depth,” Muluya said after the game.

Sofapaka could have wrapped up the game in the first half, but appeared to have left behind their scoring boots.

Keeper off his line

Michael Oduor had the first attempt for Batoto ba Mungu in the seventh minute. The winger picked out Kariobangi Sharks keeper Robert Mboya off his line from distance, but his effort at lobbing the ball over him was wide.

The visitors’ first opportunity three minutes later via a Juma freekick which was well saved by George Opiyo in the Sofapaka goal.

But Sofapaka, the 2014 Shield Champions continued dominating proceedings despite the scare.

Ezekiel Okare should have done better in the 14th minute when a defense-splitting through pass from Kassumba found him unmarked inside the box. The forward couldn’t get a strong foot behind the ball and the keeper Mboya easily saved. 

In the 29th minute, Kasumba picked out Oduor with another incisive through pass, but the midfielder’s effort at goal was wide.

Four minutes later, Ssimbwa’s men had another opportunity but indecisiveness saw them fire a blank. 

From deep in his half, right back Willis Ouma lifted the ball into the box finding Okare, but the forward took too much time with the ball allowing Kariobangi Sharks defense to poke it off.

The loose ball fell on Kassumba who once again failed to react quickly and was challenged as he set to pull the trigger.

They were punished for the missed opportunities two minutes to the break when Kamau lifted the ball over the advancing keeper.

Inspired by the single goal lead, Kariobangi Sharks resumed play in the second half with more vigor and just seven minutes in, they doubled the tally.

The impressive Kamau, starting only his third match this year made a superb 50-yard pass to Juma inside the box, the striker lifting the ball over Opiyo.

Shot from close range

Elly Asieche almost made it 3-0 against his former side with a shot from close range, but Opiyo saved.

Another brilliant chance was in the 57th minute when defender Kennedy Oduor misjudged a long ball, but Juma could not beat Opiyo one on one.

The deflated Sofapaka had a chance to half the deficit five minutes later when confusion in the Kariobangi Sharks defense from a Bernard Mang’oli through pass found Kassumba, but the Ugandan shot over even after side-stepping keeper Mboya.

Sharks put the game to bed in the 83rd minute when Juma broke the offside trap and despite Opiyo saving his initial shot, he picked up the rebound and banged it home.

Kassumba made the most of a defensive lapse with two minutes left to score Sofapaka’s consolation.

The only remaining round of 16 match pitting AFC Leopards and Bidco FC will be played on Wednesday. AFC Leopards asked for postponement as three of their players are away in Spain with the KPL All-Star team.