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Mashemeji derby: Polack reveals he nearly threw bottles at Gor Mahia players

11:03 PM MYT 10/11/2019
Joash Onyango of Gor Mahia and John Makwatta of AFC Leopards.
The British coach reveals to Goal how a pep talk at the half-time break enabled his side to produce a stunning display to beat Ingwe

Gor Mahia coach Steven Polack has revealed the reason why his side came back rejuvenated in the second half to beat rivals AFC Leopards on Sunday.

The two Kenyan giants were meeting for the first time this season in a top of the table league match with the first-half ending in a barren draw.

However, in the second period, Gor Mahia took a deserved lead courtesy of Ivorian striker Gnamien Yikpe after he rose the highest to power home from a corner kick. Yikpe then made it 2-0 finishing off a cross from Clifton Miheso. The latter player powered home the third from a well taken shot.

Despite AFC Leopards pulling a goal back courtesy of Treso Ndikumana, Lawrence Juma then sealed the win for the Kenyan champions which saw them maintain their dominance over their rivals in the derby and also move top of the 18-team league table.

The British coach has now told Goal what he told his players at the half-time break which resulted in the huge win and his first derby victory since he joined K’Ogalo.

“Honestly speaking, in the first half, we were very poor, we were very awful and we did not deserve to come out 0-0,” Polack told Goal.

“But when we went into the dressing room, I challenged my players to bring out what they were hiding in the first half. I shouted at them, I was almost throwing bottles at them and I guess it worked for us.

“It was a good display in the second half as we controlled the match from the first whistle. The half-time talk proved the difference because I sensed the style AFC Leopards were playing and asked my players to try another route, put the ball down and avoid long balls.”

On Yikpe getting his first goals for K’Ogalo, Polack said: “I am very happy for the player, He works very hard in training and it was good for him to open his account. He has always deserved to score and today [Sunday] it was his day, I am very happy for him.”

On winning his first derby on Kenyan soil, Polack responded: “The overall feeling is very good, winning the derby and remember the win takes us to the top of the table, so it is a good feeling for me and my players.”

The result means Ingwe will have to wait for a win against the Green Army for longer after yet again failing to pick up a positive result at Kasarani Stadium.