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Kerr banking on Everton experience in Gor’s title hunt

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Gor Mahia head coach Dylan Kerr at the National Stadium in Dar es Salaam as Gor played Everton FC in a friendly match. PHOTO/Timothy Olobulu

NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 17- New Gor Mahia boss Dylan Kerr is confident the record Kenyan champions can reclaim the Premier League title from Tusker FC especially with the hunger the club has shown in the two games he has seen them play.

Kerr joined Gor last weekend and watched them lose out on penalties to Bandari in the GOtv Shield, but the performance last Thursday against English Premier League side Everton in a friendly match in Tanzania gives him confidence that the team will do well.

“I think we played really well and showed the world that there is a lot of talent in Kenya. Our first half performance in that match was great, though we went to sleep a bit in the second half. We gave them time and space and when you do that against a team as Everton, you get punished,” the Briton told Capital Sport.

K’Ogalo will not be in action this weekend as the league paves way for the GOtv Shield and Kerr sees this as a blessing in disguise as he looks to pass on his philosophy to the players.

“I think from what I saw in the Everton game, I know what to work on. We have a chance to improve as a team and we should be ready in the next two weeks. I have only had a few sessions with the boys and it is really difficult to get to know your players in that short duration,”

Jacques Tuyisenge attempts to win the ball against a sliding Ashley Williams. PHOTO/Timothy Olobulu

“But now we have a lot of time to work. It might take a while before everything works out but just like it happened at Simba, eventually when it takes shape, things will be okay. I will try to get them to my way of thinking and I know I have to do that quickly,” admitted the tactician.

Despite failing to kick a ball over the weekend, Kogalo remained third in the standings with 28 points, only one shy of leaders Ulinzi Stars.

Among the things Kerr hopes to work on before their next league match is the reaction and concentration of players as well as finer details in the final third of attack.

“In the second half against Everton, we kind of switched off. I don’t know whether the players who came on were not watching us in the first half. That is an area of concern. When you come in, you have to play in the same intensity,” said the tactician.

“We also need to work a lot on the final third. The decision making bit is a bit worrying. We can be better and faster.”

Gor Mahia head coach Dylan Kerr dribbles the ball in training at the National Stadium in Dar es Salaam. PHOTO/Timothy Olobulu

On his preferred playing style; “I have noticed that not only in Kenya but in Africa, teams love to take long strides from 50, 40 yards instead of playing out wide and quick. That’s my style and I am hoping we can do that at Gor Mahia,” the coach further disclosed.

Meanwhile, Kerr who arrived in Kenya having left his job as Chesterfield FC’s Under-18 coach believes the quality of football as well as atmosphere and state of the pitch exhibited on Thursday as Gor played Everton will attract more teams to play their pre-season games in Africa.

“What we saw on the pitch was great. The surface was fantastic and it was just like playing at Goodison Park or Old Trafford. The people of Tanzania can be proud of this facility and hopefully, we have more teams coming,” the coach, previously with Tanzanian giants Simba noted.

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