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CAF Champions League

What should Gor Mahia do to keep a clean sheet in Tunis?

06:17 GMT 17/03/2018
Gor Mahia squad v Esperance.
K'Ogalo have another chance to make things right against former African champions Esperance of Tunisia in Caf competition

Gor Mahia will take on Esperance of Tunisia in the return leg of Caf Champions at Olympique de Rades Stadium on Sunday.

K’Ogalo held the North African side to a barren draw in the first leg and a win of any kind or a scoring draw will see the Kenyan side progress to the Group stage of the competition.

However, it is never easy in Tunis as recent past proves; the hosts have scored in nine of their last ten Champions League matches, only Mamelodi Sundowns from South Africa has managed to keep a clean sheet.

With the starts favouring the hosts, who have scored twenty two goals in those nine matches, what will the Kenyan Premier League champions do to ensure they get a clean sheet away?


Avoid 'silly' mistakes at the back


North African sides are good in punishing teams, who commit defensive mistakes. It is something Gor Mahia should try hard to avoid because it might break them down.

The best thing to do is to ensure they are not reckless with the ball in their third, and try to push the opponents from their area. Allowing the opponents to play near the danger zone will be like playing with fire, it should be limited.


Attack, attack and attack


Coach Dylan Kerr wants to make history with the Kenyan side and when asked about his preparedness, he told Goal , "We are going to take the game to them and put their side under pressure from the first to final whistle.

"Sitting back to defend means we will give them room to do whatever they want to do with the ball, that is not what I want because we might be punished.”

Playing attacking football will give Esperance something to think about. They are not used to seeing that especially when playing at home.

If K’Ogalo press as they did in the first leg and forget that they are playing away, then they might pull a very big surprise. 


Playing Ugly!


Winning the knockout tournaments sometimes needs sacrifices in the way teams do play. Gor Mahia is well known for their flair moves and build ups from the back, but if that slick football might lead them straight to hell, why apply it?

Long balls might be the trick and for the first time, coach Kerr should consider changing his tactics. For defenders, it should be one option, clear the ball when under pressure, it will be the safest way.


Should tackle harder!


One thing the North African teams are afraid off is hard tackles. When the opponents engage in that, they tend to get afraid in committing themselves to the ball.

Gor Mahia executed this well in the first leg, the only thing they should do is to ensure they make timely challenges.