We were second best, admits Gor coach Kerr

By alex wafula
Aug 28, 2017
  • Gor Mahia Meddie Kagere celebrates after scoring a goal against AFC Leopards at the Nyayo National stadium.(Photo by Shutterspeed)

  • AFC Leopards coach Robert Matano reacts during the derby.(Photo by Shutterspeed)

Dylan Kerr, the Gor Mahia coach has admitted his side was second best in the 1-1 draw with AFC Leopards on Sunday in the Mashemeji Derby.

Meddie Kagere scored the equalizer for Gor after Musa Mohammed turned a Samuel Ndung’u cross into his own net.

AFC Leopards gave in a performance of their lives and they should have grabbed an upsetting win had they used their chances.

“It is disappointing today and to be honest we were second best to AFC especially in the first half. We were second to the long balls, second in possession, second in passing… It’s frustrating. It is like we did not know what to do with the ball and to think this is the same squad I watch doing amazingly in training is frustrating,” Kerr lamented after the game.

He noted that AFC leopards played a different game from the one he watched on Thursday when they played against Tusker. “They were better, quicker and more aggressive and we didn’t know just how to respond,” Kerr added.

AFC Leopards boss Robert Matano was elated with the result and noted it gives them motivation to fight for a respectable finish at the end of the season.

“We can’t win the league now but this is a massive point. Gor Mahia are on top and coming here to get a point off them is a huge motivation for us. I am happy with how we played and it is all down to discipline from the players,” Matano said.

Despite dropping points in the league for the first time since taking charge at K’Ogalo, Kerr maintained his side’s six point lead at the top.

AFC Leopards got the lead in the 20th minute when Ndung’u’s low shot from the right was deflected by Musa Mohammed into his own net under pressure from Alexis Kitenge. Ingwe had picked up beautiful transition play with Duncan Otieno playing Ndung’u through on the left in a move that started off from keeper Gabriel Andika.

Before going behind, Gor Mahia had two chances. First, Kagere headed wide from a Karim Nizigiyimana cross before Kenneth Muguna’s shot from the edge of the box was deflected off for a corner.

After going down, Gor upped their tempo upfront. Philemon Otieno’s shot was saved by Andika while Kagere’s effort after being played through by Muguna went wide.

Matano had done his homework right and fielded a strong midfield partnership, Duncan Otieno and Victor Majid ensuring Muguna found no space to run and build up play.

The early goal had given them confidence and they built up play well. However, their hopes of adding a second in quick succession were thwarted in the 35th minute when Kagere drew Gor level.

Defender Robinson Kamura slipped as he tried to cut off a lobbed pass from Muguna destined for Kagere’s feet and the Ugandan-born Rwandese took the gift with both hands, picked his spot and beat Andika.

Almost immediately after going ahead, George ‘Blackberry’ Odhiambo came inches close to goal number two for K’Ogalo but his volley from a Karim Nizigiyimana delivery went inches wide. Kagere had another chance to make it two for himself and the team after another piece of link up play from Muguna, but he shot wide.

The second half started more or less with same tempo. The two teams had close opportunities from freekicks but none could find the back of the net. First, Robinson Kamura forced Boniface Oluoch to a full stretched save from 30 yards out in the 57th minute while on the other end, Godfrey Walusimbi’s ferocious effort went inches over the bar.

Both teams changed personnel with Boniface Omondi coming on for Philemon Otieno while AFC Leopards brought on Marcelus Ingotsi for Vincent Oburu. The midfield dynamics also changed with Gor pulling out Ernest Wendo for Jean Baptiste Mugiraneza while Ingwe responded by bringing on Andrew Tololwa for Duncan Otieno.

Both teams continued to attack and in the 76th minute, Tuyisenge broke into the box after skipping past Salim Abdallah but a covering Dennis Sikhayi did superbly to make a blocking tackle just as the Rwandese was preparing to shoot at goal.

On the other end, Mohammed almost scored into his own net for the second time again trying to clear a Ndung’u cross, but lucky for him the ball flew over the bar this time.

KPL weekend results:

Saturday: Muhoroni v Chemelil Sugar (Muhoroni), Nakumatt v Nzoia Sugar (Ruaraka), Sofapaka v Posta Rangers (Narok Stadium).

Sunday: Gor Mahia 1 AFC Leopards 1 (Nyayo Stadium), Bandari 2 Mathare United 2 (Mbaraki Complex, Mombasa), Kakamega Homeboyz 1 Tusker FC 1 (Mumias Complex), Sony Sugar 0 Kariobangi Sharks 0 (Awendo), Zoo Kericho 4 Western Stima 2 (Kericho Green Stadium).