K’Ogalo coronation day to highlight KPL penultimate round


K’Ogalo coronation day to highlight KPL penultimate round
Gor Mahia FC head coach Hassan Oktay celebrates with players after scoring against AFC Leopards SC during their Kenyan Premier League match dubbed Mashemeji Derby held at Kasarani stadium in Nairobi on May 19, 2019. Gor Mahia FC won 3-1. Photo/Kelly/Sportpicha/Citizen

In Summary

  • With the 2018/2019 Kenyan Premier League (KPL) champion known, round 33 this weekend will be about relegation battle and more importantly, coronation of Gor Mahia for the record 18th time.
  • Gor Mahia head coach Hassan Oktay wants his charges to enjoy themselves in the match, to cap synchronize the joy of coronation with a win.
  • At the Mbaraki Sports Club, the second spot tussle will continue as Bernard Mwalala’s Bandari welcome 2009 champions Sofapaka, with only four points separating them.

With the 2018/2019 Kenyan Premier League (KPL) champion known, round 33 this weekend will be about relegation battle and more importantly, coronation of Gor Mahia for the record 18th time.

All roads lead to the Kenyatta Stadium Machakos on Saturday, where the coronation business will be happening after the Posta Rangers-Gor clash, one of the three slated for the day.

Gor Mahia head coach Hassan Oktay wants his charges to enjoy themselves in the match, to cap synchronize the joy of coronation with a win.

“We have the title already, but it feels sweet to lift it with a win. There is no pressure at all, the team has done a great job this season across the competitions. This makes it even more enjoyable, when you play with confidence knowing you have done the core work,” said the coach.

It will be a day of emotions also as inevitably, changes are set take place and some of the players in the current Oktay’s unit could be on their way out after this season. Though no concrete information has been officially announced, Citizen Digital has exclusively learnt some key players have been recommended out of the team by high ranking officials, while the coach badly wants them for next season’s campaign.

“We have a meeting this evening (Friday) to discuss the way forward. We cannot pre-empt anything for now but exits and new signings are normal in a team,” said one of the senior officials, ahead of the crowning day.

Poignantly, the said players are facing exclusion due to what another official, on condition of anonymity, termed as “trade unionist behaviour.”

While Gor will extend their season tally to 73 points with a win, Posta Rangers will be hoping to seal at least a draw to avoid possibility of relegation, with John Kamau’s men sitting 14th with 31 points.

Kamau knows losses in the two remaining matches will see the Mailmen in the red zone, if Vihiga United and Zoo Kericho win their matches for the round 33 and 34.

Vihiga, 17th with 26 and Zoo, 16 with 29, are both capable of surpassing Posta’s 31 thus the fight will be on to the last fixture.

Only Mount Kenya United have their fate sealed, after a troublesome season in the topflight characterized by serious lack of funds.

Vihiga will be hosting Western Stima while Zoo will be welcoming Kakamega Hombeboyz on Sunday, while another relegation threatened Chemelil Sugar will be at home against Mathare United.

Second spot tussle

At the Mbaraki Sports Club, the second spot tussle will continue as Bernard Mwalala’s Bandari welcome 2009 champions Sofapaka, with only four points separating them.

Bandari have 62 points, and a slip at home will see Sofapaka rise to just one shy of the Dockers, seeking to finish the league as the second-best team, especially counting on the last day fixture on Wednesday.

“When the title is gone, you only remain with one target – to finish in the best position possible. We have to do our best in the remaining matches although this is the same mentality our opponents are coming with,” told Mwalala.

And, with only three goals separating the top Golden Boot challengers, round 33 will offer another opportunity for Allan Wanga (18), Umaru Kasumba (17) and Enosh Ochieng to put more claim on the coveted gong.

 

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Story By Jacob Icia
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