'No advantage for Mathare United in starting FKF Premier League late' - Ochieng'

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David Cheche Ochieng
Goal Kenya.
The Slum Boys will be playing Sofapaka away on Saturday hoping to start their campaign on a high

Mathare United defender David Ochieng' has stated it is disadvantageous for his team to start the Football Kenya Federation (FKF) Premier League late.

The 2008 league champions were temporarily locked out of the competition after refusing to sign an endorsement deal between FKF and StarTimes to surrender their broadcasting rights to the latter. The Federation went on to expel them but the Sports Disputes Tribunal (SDT) ruled in favour of the slum boys.

"It is a disadvantage to us that some teams have played about five, six games already and have several points," Ochieng' told Goal.

"We cannot say we have a game in hand because we have not already won them. Other teams know their strengths and weaknesses as opposed to us which is a disadvantage.

"It is something that should not happen, but now that it has happened, we have to brace ourselves and give our best. It is like climbing a hill with your competitors already halfway."

The 28-year-old defender has further warned other teams that Mathare players have had enough rest and have not come to joke around.

"The team felt good after getting the positive news of returning on the pitch," Ochieng' continued.

"Every player trains hoping to be involved in matches and now that we are part of the league, it has given us motivation and boosted our confidence.  

"We have had enough rest as players and Mathare is not coming to joke around with any team. Yes, other teams have played many matches as compared to us, but the rest we have had is good and enough for us to go and give our best on the pitch."

The former AFC Leopards defender has further revealed the target for Mathare United this season.

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"As a team, we want to give our best and win the league, but in case it does not happen then we have to finish high and prepare better for another campaign.

"But as a player, I will be satisfied if we win the league title this season. It will be a good ending after a bad start." 

Mathare United will be opening their campaign on Saturday, January 9 away to Sofapaka FC.

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