The Kenyan Premier League's defending champions were just twenty minutes away from another historic milestone, Group stages qualification, but bottled up. They have a consolation, Caf Confederation Cup, but they will have to show how good they are against Cameroon side New Star with an aggregate winner proceeding to the Group stages of the same competition.
Well, K’Ogalo have not been stable of late in the technical bench and after the exit of Dylan Kerr, Hassan Oktay took over. Saying that the team has stabilized will be an open lie despite them winning 3-1 against Lobi Stars in Nairobi.
The suspension of key duo - captain Harun Shakava and Joash Onyango, with the reported imminent exit of Humphrey Mieno, has not made it easier for the team; but what should they do to ensure they get favorable result at home?
Make use of the Green Army
The Kenyan champions have massive followers, who can push the team to give the best on the pitch, the motivation they offer is comparable and priceless. They are the only ones, who can intimidate the visitors and make them feel uncomfortable. The club should urge the fans to turn out in large numbers and emulate Asante Kotoko and Lobi Stars fans, who turned up in thousands to cheer their teams to the next stage. It brings the home feeling that is always important for any team and helps them to play well.
Simplify matters on the pitch
Just last week, coach Hassan Oktay admitted that the team has not mastered his philosophy. It is obvious, the coach will want the players to play his way and give him the results he wants. However, the game against New Star is not about trial and error, money is involved and status as well. So it is just logical for the technical bench to ensure the team sticks to what it is used to. By doing that, the players will be able to express selves quite well and go on to win the game.
Avoid costly mistakes
Harun Shakava, Joash Onyango and Humphrey Mieno have been instrumental for the team and they will be solely missed - not clear whether Mieno will be involved. It will be a make shift defense that will do the job for Gor Mahia at the back. The worst Gor Mahia can do right now is concede, they will have to ensure they do not make silly mistakes at the back; but it starts from the midfield and that is where Ernest Wendo comes in. This is not the time for him to sleep, he needs to be sharp and stop New Star from playing in midfield. Charles Momanyi will have a new partner in Pascal Ogweno, who is making his debut, the best he can do is help him play well and avoid making costly decisions.