The stage is set for a bruising football battle when a limping but physical Ulinzi Stars host the drum beating Sofapaka in highly billed league match set for the Afraha Stadium, Nakuru on Sunday.
Ulinzi Stars who are the hosts go into the match with their egos bruised having returned an empty sheet from their last four matches.
Ever since they lost to league giants Gor Mahia, in the KPL Top 8 final a month ago, they have never won a league match in the subsequent three outings which is cause of concern for their head coach Sammy Simiyu.
The soldiers have failed to inspire hope firing blanks against defending champions Tusker who held them to barren draw before suffering identical 1-0 defeats in the hands of Chemelil Sugar and Gor Mahia respectively.
As such all the pressure is on the shoulder of head coach Simiyu when he leads his wounded soldiers against the ambitious Sofapaka side optimistic of a bounce back.
“Our problem in the past games has been finishing but we hope to put this to rest. We have several players back and the presence of Ochomo is set to be a boost,” Simiyu said.
The military at position six with 37 points will be aiming to get the three prized points but in Sofapaka, they face fierce rivals.
The Batoto Ba Mungu’ under new coach Stewart Hall, are much thirsty and hungry for victory. After a four game winless streak, they will be hoping to break the duck at Afraha.
Hall, watched from the VIP dais when Sofapaka’s fired blanks against the defending champions Tusker on Wednesday and when he officially takes charge on Sunday, he expects to begin with a win.
Prior to settling for a 0-0 draw against Tusker, the 2009 league champions had fought to a1-1 draw against Chemelil Sugar, a scoreless draw against Gor Mahia and similar score line against City Stars.
Hall knows too well, the weight of the task at hand and the only way to lessen the pressure is to let the soldiers shoot themselves on the foot. With the league race title far from decided, a win for Sofapaka will see them catch up with second placed Gor Mahia on 43 points.