Ex-Gor defender joins Albanian club


Eric Ouma of Gor Mahia FC reacts against CNaps Sport during their Caf champions league ...
(FILE)Eric Ouma of Gor Mahia FC reacts against CNaps Sport during their Caf champions league first leg match at the Nyayo national stadium in Nairobi, Kenya on February 13, 2016. CNaps Sport won 2-1. Photo/Stafford Ondego/Sportpicha

In Summary

  • Former Gor Mahia left-back Erick ‘Marcello’ Ouma is on the verge of re-uniting with former coach Jose ‘Ze Maria’ Ferreira at Albanian side FK Tirana
  • Marcello’ as he is fondly known by the K’Ogalo crowd worked under the Brazilian tactician at the Kenyan Premier League champions in 2016.
  • His stay in Georgia was far from smooth prompting Ouma to return home before Ze Maria came for his services.

Former Gor Mahia left-back Erick ‘Marcello’ Ouma is on the verge of re-uniting with former coach Jose ‘Ze Maria’ Ferreira at Albanian side FK Tirana in June 2018 after his six-month loan to another Albanian outfit KS Kastrioti Kruje materialized last month.

The Kenya international completed the move from Georgian side FC Kolkheti Poti to the countries’ second tier courtesy of Ze Maria, who wants to closely monitor him before his three-year contract at Tirana comes to effect on July 1, 2018.

‘Marcello’ as he is fondly known by the K’Ogalo fans worked under the Brazilian tactician at the Kenyan Premier League (KPL) champions in 2016 before leaving the Kenyan giants abruptly for pastures new in Europe, sealing a deal with Georgian top tier side Kolkheti.

However, his stay in Georgia was far from smooth with a string of injuries crippling his ambition to shine in Europe in his first year, as he had with Gor in his KPL debut season.

Gor Mahia’s Eric Ouma (left) and Bandari FC’s Abdallah Hassan in a tussle for the ball in their Kenyan Premier League clash played in Kisumu. PHOTO/www.sportpicha.com

“I’m happy for the move because it directly opens my door to play under a coach who showed trust with me when I was very green at Gor. Tirana is a big club, the most successful in Albania and an offer from a coach who understands me better to me was irresistible.

“I look forward to joining the team but for now I have to give the best to Kastrioti because the transition pathway is equally important for me and both teams are chasing promotion to the top flight,” said Marcelo.

His local agent revealed he would have joined Tirana directly from Kolkheti, but the countries’ foreign players’ quota policy would limit his playtime at the club. Thus, Ze Maria recommended he be loaned to the club, which has another Nigerian player in Samson Liasu, featuring on loan from Tirana too.

Gor Mahia head coach, Jose ‘Ze Maria’ Marcelo Ferreira in a previous game. PHOTO/File

“Kastrioti base is very close to Tirana, just a 15 minutes drive. It will be easier for him to keep contact with him from there.

“Had he joined Tirana directly, he would have therefore found little playtime considering there are other foreign players already and doing really well for the team, and only four can be on the field of play at a time,” explained the intermediary.

Once the deal goes through, he will reunite with compatriots Musa Mohamed and Kenneth Muguna at Tirana who both decamped from the KPL champions last month.

Currently, Kastrioti are placed atop of the country’s Division One group A table with 35 points, ten points above second-placed Egnatia Rogozhine while in Group B, Tirana leads with 37 points, seven ahead of second-placed Bylis.

Eric Ouma (left) of Gor Mahia FC contests for the ball with Luis Misiko of Tusker FC during their KPL top 8 knockout tournament semi-finals first leg clash at the Nyayo National Stadium in Nairobi. Photo/Stafford Ondego/www.sportpicha.com

Ouma will be hoping to be ready for his new side when they come against fourth-placed Dinamo Tirana in their next league tie slated for Saturday 10 February.

He becomes the fifth player in Tirana city after Ugandan duo Yunus Sentamu and midfielder Tony Mawejje.

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Story By Jacob Icia
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